Author Topic: When others in your life find out, do they leave your life?  (Read 39887 times)

ppearl214

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When others in your life find out, do they leave your life?
« on: March 07, 2006, 12:53:30 pm »
Hi all,

I've seen this slightly discussed around here in some other threads. I've discussed this with family, coworkers and some friends/acquaintances.  I figured that this would be a good topic of conversation....so, here goes.

Why is it that when some in your life find out what is going on physically with you, they disappear from your life?

Example: 
-A man I was dating for almost 2 years found out last May of my AN.   Boom... never heard from him again.
-A dear friend of over 20 years was told last May. Now, she's always the one to hear of an illness, jumps right in, always there.  I tell her about me... boom, no phone calls, nothing. Did get a holiday card from her in December, but nothing more.

My best friend of over 40 years (Kate) and I were discussing it in the car yesterday. She reminded me that she will ALWAYS be there for me. (you have no idea the tears I shed when she said that).  A coworker and I discussed it this am. My coworker couldn't understand why people would do that? Her comment was... were they scared that we would "infect" them or are they that heartless?  My only comment to her was... "well, I guess it's all part of human nature".  I have no clue if I'm right or wrong on that but, I wanted to throw this all out at you.

Some of the folks here and I have also discussed this and what an isolating feeling when someone we always held as dear in our lives, does this to us.

Are many of you in the same shoes as this? Do you find that others (in your private lives) have disappeared or when you try to call or such, don't even both to return the call or check up on you?  How do you deal with it?

I know this doesn't just apply to AN patients but cancer patients, etc as well. Has always been a sore spot with me that folks will do this but just trying to understand the human nature behind this kind of action.

Phyllis

"Gentlemen, I wash my hands of this weirdness", Capt Jack Sparrow - Davy Jones Locker, "Pirates of the Carribbean - At World's End"

wanderer

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Re: When others in your life find out, do they leave your life?
« Reply #1 on: March 07, 2006, 01:33:21 pm »
well I think part of it is many people think you are done for and they don't know how to handle that.


another things, is it is a hell of a burden for some people.  And they just don't want to deal.


I am reminded of a saying I was told as a kid.   Tell your troubles to your enemies, they are the only ones who really care.

While telling people what is going on is often unavoidable,  it is important to realize that no matter what is happening to us, the world does not revolve around us.    So it is easy sometimes to spend so much time talking about ourselves that we forget that others around us might be in need as well.

In the end, anyone who leaves you after they find out is probably better out of your life,  for their sakes and yours.   

Captain Deb

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Re: When others in your life find out, do they leave your life?
« Reply #2 on: March 07, 2006, 01:50:51 pm »
Phyllis,

This is a very real problem for us.  Being around large groups of people makes us symptomatic(wobbly/headachy) which leads us to be a little or a lot antisocial.  Illness freaks people out, too.

 You just continously have to keep reaching out and not expecting people to reach in!

 We also have a tendency to let our own physical problems dominate the conversation, which bores the crap out of folks sometimes.  Personally I'm sick to death of talking about my health to "normals"--which is why I'm here on this site!!!

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.
Captain Deb 8)

"You only have two choices, having fun or freaking out"-Jimmy Buffett
50-ish with a 1x.7x.8cm.AN
Mid-fossa HEI, Jan 03 Friedman & Hitselberger
Chronic post-op headaches
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GM

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Re: When others in your life find out, do they leave your life?
« Reply #3 on: March 07, 2006, 03:13:21 pm »
In my opinion (IMO), think it’s a “mortality checkâ€? for your friends.  We’ve already have our “cross-to-bearâ€? if you will.  Everyone I know is nursing some illness or physical impairment…maybe these people are afraid of what is awaiting them…and they’re not sure or able to deal with it. 

But…if I may…  I have told a few people myself.  The people that disappeared were not my friends…they were acquaintances…big difference there.  Friends are supposed to be few, and hard to come by.  They are the ones that you can call (or get called by), at
2 AM and be there in an instant, for any reason.  If we have only a few friends in your life we are truly blessed.  I have two…Bill and Don.  I love them like brothers and know that I can call them (or them me) at any time day or night.  I hug them when they walk into my home and when they leave…they’re like family to me.

So don’t be bummed out by acquaintances…they’re not worth it.   Just be pleasant to them, hold your chin high…because we’re all going to get through this, and pray that they’ll be able to handle the cross that is waiting for them.

Gary
Originally 1.8cm (left ear)...Swelled to 2.1 cm...and holding after GK treatment (Nov 2003)
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Gennysmom

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Re: When others in your life find out, do they leave your life?
« Reply #4 on: March 07, 2006, 03:26:02 pm »
I really agree with GM.  I think when other people hear brain tumor, they think of their mortality and of death in general and it's easier to let go of someone alive than it is grieving through a death.  There are many people out there (I'm now realizing) that just don't have very good coping skills.  I'm finding that I need to comfort rather than be comforted right now, but it's a new thing for me and I have no idea who's going to stay with me through surgery.  But your true friends will stay no matter what, and in reality, weeding the others out so that you can spend more time with the people that truly care about you is a good thing.  Keep your chin up, and remember we're all human.
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ppearl214

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Re: When others in your life find out, do they leave your life?
« Reply #5 on: March 07, 2006, 04:19:36 pm »
Hi all and thanks so much for sharing your thoughts on this with me. You all are so on the money and can't agree with you more. As you can see by my original post, these are people I dated, I've been friends with for over 20 years, etc (definately beyond "acquaintances"). I really am not one to talk to those with "whoa, me" or such.  As my mom says, "everyone has their own schtick" and I never forget that. I always start conversations with "...and how are YOU?".  They have always come first in my conversations with them.  They may ask how I am doing and it's usually "oh, you know me, I'm hanging tough" and usually leave it at that. If someone, like my best friend, really wants to know details, then I share details. The only other one's I share details with are my family members or boyfriend (yes, the Cheeky Bloke). 

Everyone knows I just plug along, I live my life, I travel, I come and go, I do.  I try not to let it hamper me if I'm not having a good day. In conversation, I keep my "illness" talk limited.

for me, I just don't get it.  You all have very valid points and I can't agree more. I'm trying to take what you all wrote and apply it to individuals that have done this to me to help me try to make sense of it. Now, granted... I'm not going to wrack my brain over it but I'm just trying to get a better understanding of why. 

So, thanks all for sharing your thoughts on this. :)

Phyl
"Gentlemen, I wash my hands of this weirdness", Capt Jack Sparrow - Davy Jones Locker, "Pirates of the Carribbean - At World's End"

matti

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Re: When others in your life find out, do they leave your life?
« Reply #6 on: March 07, 2006, 04:43:36 pm »
One of my best friends (or so I thought) is no longer in my life as of a year ago. She was a very needy person. Our relationship was based on me always listening to her and being there for her. She did not know how to give the support I needed. Someday's I just wanted her to ask me how I was feeling or how my day was going. It was as if she completely blocked out what happened to me.

I agree with Gary, I think for alot of people it is a "mortallity check".

It is times such as these that you do find out who your true friends are.

I have someone like Kate in my life and I am truely blessed.

take care,
matti







3.5 cm  - left side  Single sided deafness 
Middle Fossa Approach - California Ear Institute at Stanford - July 1998
Dr. Joseph Roberson and Dr. Gary Steinberg
Life is great at 50

ppearl214

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Re: When others in your life find out, do they leave your life?
« Reply #7 on: March 07, 2006, 06:10:20 pm »
matti,

thank you hun. We are truly lucky to have people like Kate in our lives. :)

Phyl
"Gentlemen, I wash my hands of this weirdness", Capt Jack Sparrow - Davy Jones Locker, "Pirates of the Carribbean - At World's End"

Battyp

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Re: When others in your life find out, do they leave your life?
« Reply #8 on: March 07, 2006, 06:32:37 pm »
I tend to agree...when you go through something like this you truly find out who your good friends are.  Most people can't relate and want to stay in their rose colored happy go lucky world where nothing bad touches them.  I prefer to be a realist and deal with all aspects of life.  Does make for some lonely weekends though.

lmurray69

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Re: When others in your life find out, do they leave your life?
« Reply #9 on: March 07, 2006, 06:59:12 pm »
Dear phillis , so sorry that you are having trouble this is the last thing that you needed to hear I know .. When I found out ,My family have dis owned me.. they wont call holidays are a dud.. so believe me you know what we are all going threw.. writ eme anytime ...lmurray69@hotmail.com
radiation feb 05, gammaknife, tumor is 1.2x0.08/ surgery Nov 1st 2006 Dr House/Swarts/

Battyp

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Re: When others in your life find out, do they leave your life?
« Reply #10 on: March 07, 2006, 07:22:49 pm »
My step sisters made fun of me at thanksgiving because I couldn't hear and my  hair was short.  It was all I could do to sit there and not flip out...

lmurray69 we need to plan the holdiays together so we can have fun!

matti

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Re: When others in your life find out, do they leave your life?
« Reply #11 on: March 07, 2006, 07:49:50 pm »
Imurray and battyprincess - As I sit here and read your posts, I am crying. I am so sorry that you were both treated in such a horrible and unforgivable way.

My home is always open to you all and I would be honored to share my table with you.

matti
3.5 cm  - left side  Single sided deafness 
Middle Fossa Approach - California Ear Institute at Stanford - July 1998
Dr. Joseph Roberson and Dr. Gary Steinberg
Life is great at 50

RadiantStar

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Re: When others in your life find out, do they leave your life?
« Reply #12 on: March 07, 2006, 07:51:28 pm »
Thanks for bringing this particular subject into the light.  I was thinking I was being too critical and or depressed when my own mother didn't show up at the hospital the day of my surgery, then never came to visit while I was in the hospital.  Same thing with my "best friend", she called, but never came to see me.  She told me she didn't want to bother me......
Why are people like this????? >:(
Kathleen

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Re: When others in your life find out, do they leave your life?
« Reply #13 on: March 07, 2006, 08:32:40 pm »
It has been my experience  that a health crisis really tests relationships(be it family/friends/co-workers/spouces/in-laws etc). and I certainly have had a great deal of experience in "loosing" people due to THIER inability to deal with MY illness. I moarn the losses in some cases and in others I don't miss them all, in the end I don't need them but it certainly hurts to come to terms that who you thought you were important to your "not important enough". When the orginal tumor hit I lost a bunch, there were those who couldn't deal with the "after me" and those I couldn't deal with once I had change post-op (I did change), then there's my family members that I have remained attached to but who just don't "get it" and frustrate the heck outta me but what can ya do thier family (sister and brother). I have gotten that the only people I KNOW will always be there is my husband, children and parents....all others may or may not and I try my best not to be too attached to them....sounds sad but is what has happened.
Kathleen
1st AN surgery @ age 23, 16 hours
Loss of 7-10th nerves
mulitple "plastic" repairs to compensate for effects of 7th nerve loss
tumor regrowth, monitored for a few years then surgically removed @ age 38 (of my choice, not medically necessary yet)

ppearl214

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Re: When others in your life find out, do they leave your life?
« Reply #14 on: March 07, 2006, 08:56:38 pm »
lmurray and batty-one.  I'm only going to share this with you once and you all better hold me to it.  I maintain open door policy at my home at ALL times.... and you, my dears, are ALWAYS welcome.  :-* (as is anyone else on this board!)

I can't remember which post it was recently, but it was a reply back to a post I did... I was reminded that I was now a part of a "new family" (gawd, I wish I could remember who said that to me) and you know what?  They are on the money!  You all have welcomed me beyond any imagination. You all have tolerated my *coff* humor, my questions, my ramblings, etc. And, for that, I cannot thank you enough.  (sorry Mark, had to say it one more time!)

In all that you all wrote, I sit back and think about those that have "stepped back" from my reality. So, if they choose to no longer be a part of my life, which obviously does include "my reality", then so be it. I am not mad, I am not bitter, I am just befuddled. For those that choose to remain in my life, including my new-found AN family, then gawd, you have NO idea how much you all are so welcomed into my home, my thoughts, my heart.  I know, sounds mushy but.... it is spoken from the heart.

This thread was not meant to be a downer and if it has triggered some down feelings within you, then please accept my apology. But, I am a firm believer of the glass being 1/2 full and that in life, truly wonderful people, even those I've only "met" in writings or on the phone, will come my way. So, from the bottom of my heart, know that I appreciate you!  I enjoy all of you!  You all are in my thoughts, wishes and prayers and I thank my lucky stars for my new "extended family". :)

xoxo
Phyllis

(ok, now back to our regularly scheduled program! :) )
"Gentlemen, I wash my hands of this weirdness", Capt Jack Sparrow - Davy Jones Locker, "Pirates of the Carribbean - At World's End"

 


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