Each woman’s will have a different experience with breast cancer diagnosis and treatment as life changes in a moment’s time. This diagnosis may be your first, or may be a recurrence, or new cancer after being cancer free.
The following three questions will always be there:
- Why me?
- What happens now?
- Will I be okay?
These are normal thoughts to have and good questions to ask. How you process these thoughts and feelings can impact how you cope through your cancer treatment and after treatment is complete.
It is normal for women to experience some or all of these feelings after a cancer diagnosis, and research has found that women who seek emotional support during and after a cancer diagnosis experience less stress, depression, anxiety, and isolation.
In addition, many women also struggle with other issues and concerns such as:
- Treatment side effects, such as hair loss, fatigue and “chemo brain”
- Thoughts about mortality, or death and dying
- Navigating the hospital and medical system
- Intimacy and dating during and after a cancer diagnosis
- Sexuality: changes in sexual desire, intimacy
- Medically-induced menopause (vaginal dryness, pain during intercourse, etc)
- Loss of breasts & body image and self-esteem
- Lymphedema and its side effects
- Work related issues: sharing your diagnosis in the work place, applying for dissability, returning to work during and after treatment
- Financial stressors, such as medical co-pays and drug costs
- How to talk to loved ones including children about cancer
- Getting back to “normal” after treatment ends
- Fear of recurrence: “Will my cancer return?”
- Staying healthy and eating healthy during and after treatment
- Living with chronic illness (metastatic disease)
- Choosing complimentary or alternative treatment options
We firmly believe that, with proper intervention, you can learn to live a full and productive life even after cancer diagnosis.
We can discuss these and other issues that may be affecting you in individual counseling sessions. Our support group services will also cover some of these topics in a safe, confidential, and healing environment.
Please contact us for further information, and to make an appointment.