Just feeling overwhelmed...

I hope this is alright to post here, and I'm not stepping on any toes as regards to protocol.. but I just felt like I needed a place to get everything down before I go crazy..

where to begIn..? Well in Oct 2014 I was diagnosed with stage 2b node positive adenosquamous plus neuroendocrine carcinoma of the cervix.. went through 5 weeks of radiotherapy and 5 chemo treatments with 3 treatments of brachytherap.. which ended in Jan 2015. Finally got the all clear further in the year due to infections giving concern that they might still be cancer left..  been all clear ever since.. coming up to 4yrs now..  and i would have thought that this part.. what seemed like so long ago, the final stretch as it were, would be plain sailing, but everything has just gone completely and utterly wrong. In the past month I've found out my husband had been having an affair for 15 months pretty much all the way through the latter half of 2016 to the end of last year.. they're still in contact though so who knows if it's really over between them, but anyway, so now I'm about to start divorce proceedings. Ive not worked for the past 18 yrs or so because I was raising our family (joint decision) but I need money to pay bills and solicitors so I need to find a job asap!! And now I've got my routine app through for my out-patients clinic and it's with a completely different oncologist.. is it stupid that I feel betrayed all over again? Where's my doctor? Why can't I see her? Of course the clear rational side of me says that this is okay.. that Drs move on, etc.. but I can't help the way that I feel. It doesn't help that my best friend was my husband, and now I feel I can't talk to anyone about it.. i have tried talking to my ex, and he did sympathise with me, but only because he was feeling the same loss and grief for the woman he had an affair with..!! So talking to him is out of the question. I can't talk to my mum.. She's just a negative person.. nothing good to say about anyone or anything.. I can't talk to my daughter because shes just had a baby a couple of months ago and i just can't. My best female friends dad has just been diagnosed with terminal lung cancer so I can't talk to her. I just feel so utterly alone. I've tried to get in a more positive frame of mind.. tried thinking good things about the future, but when I do, I just think I'll always be lonely. I can't meet anyone else.. I cant have a physical relationship with anyone because of the damage from the treatments... and not using the dilators, this didn't seem much of a problem when I was with my ex because of his problems "downstairs" and bad back.. and I know rationally that if he could manage to cheat despite his problems, then by rights I should be able to move on eventually and be happy, but I just don't see it happening.. there wouldn't be any point.. It'll just end with them either cheating or leaving because they want a physical relationship. I'm only 45.. and I just can't bear it.. I'm too strong to end it all, but I'm too weak to carry on like this.

anyway, to those who are still reading.. thanks for sticking with me.. 



Hi Mandy,


I don't know what to say.... how devastating to have your life turned completely upside down betrayed by the person you loved and trusted. I wish i could offer you a real hug. You have faced so much already without having to go through this as well. Especially with the burden of not being able to talk about it with your normal support people.

Have you thought about contacting a counsellor or social worker, who might be able to link you with some woman community services to help you with the transition of finding work? Your gp might be aware of some community services  thst could help. Its not the same as people you know and trust, but they may be able to link you with people who have shared experiences of divorce when they have been the primary caregiver and gaining their financial freedom again.

Do whatever you need to help best set up your own support and look after your needs best.

If you ever need to vent or just chat. Feel free to message.

Wishing you all the best in the tough times that you face.

Much love xx

Hi Mandy.

That's a lot to cope with and I'm hoping you feel better for venting on here. We are all here to support you.

Divorce? don't rush it, if he wants one let him instigate and pay for it. In your situation you will probably qualify for legal aid ? After a few years separated.. it used to be 2 but I'm not sure now, you can have a simple quickie divorce which is a lot cheaper. Citizens Advice can probably help with that.

I think your daughter and best friend would be more receptive than you think . Have you got a cancer support centre linked to your local hospital ? The volunteers in there have a good listening ear. You need to get this all off your chest and not bottle it up.

Doctors do move on.. this one might be better ?

Sending you positive vibes and support.. you are stronger thank you think xx

Oh man, sometimes things really get heaped on us don't they? No real advice other than contact your treatment centre for a survivorship group? They will be a great place to vent and everyone will totally 'get it'. 

Sending you virtual hugs x

Thankyou all for your kind words and advice. I've since been to see a solicitor,  seems financially I might be okay, legally entitled to half of the assets and he can't just abandon me financially with regards to the household bills.. but I still need to find work asap.. which leads to the question.. do I disclose my cancer? It'll be 5yrs next year that I've been all clear, so would it be even worth mentioning to any future employer? I know legally you can't discriminate against you for the cancer, but I don't know.. something is just holding me back from saying anything about it. I have an app with my out patients clinic next month so I'll ask about any survivor groups there, the new dr I'm seeing is a specialist in skin cancer, so maybe they're switching up their specialities or covering for my regular dr while she's on holiday? Again I'll ask while I'm there. I can talk a bit to my friend and daughter, but it's so difficult. I don't really want to drag my daughter into the middle of this between us, and like I said my friends dad is dying, so there's only so much angst and anger she can take.. but talking here has helped a little, thanks again for listenin. Xx

Hi Mandy,


I honestly wouldn't disclose to a new employer that I had cancer. The only reason I would is if I required considerable time for appointments and unable to work as I am at the moment. I think that even though they are not allowed to discriminate ... some would use it against you so you weren't selected for a position.


Goodluck with everything. 

Any time you feel the need to vent do so. 

Much love xx

Thanks Bexter..  I think you're right. I'm not going to disclose.. I think if it had been a couple of years ago I probaBly wouldn't have had an option, but since I'll be signed off  next year anyway from hospital visits and such, I think the best course of action is to keep it to myself. Now if only solving the not sleeping was so easy.. no matter how busy I keep myself during the day, I just can't sleep, I manage to get 2-3 hours tops but then I'm awake. I'm reluctant to go use medication, but I think eventually I will have to.. either that or keep stumbling around like a zombie. 


Hi Mandy,  


I had an ileostomy put in end of last month for a hole between my bowel and vagina from radiation. Since then my bladder has been maximum of an hour bladder day and night so i asked my gp for just some low dose valium to relax me so i could get some sleep in between as I was completely exhausted. Just take what you need to get some rest. The brain works much better when you are not completely exhausted. 


Take care xx

Hi Mandy I read your post with great empathy. I went through a divorce 4 years before I was diagnosed with what is now stage 4B cc. I can tell you that the divorce was more upsetting than my cancer. it is horrible to loose your home, your best friend and your financial security. Probably the only redeeming part of my divorce is I initiated it. With cancer everyone tries to help you. Divorces can get very nasty but it seems your ex has a sense of compassion for you if not fidelity. As you stated your financial situation may not be all that bad and it is amazing what we can cope with. I worked in Occ Health and safety and we would undertake medical checks on all promising applicants for strenuous positions. Other applicants simply fill in a health questionnaire. i would only tell them if they specifically ask and not otherwise. Lets face it at 4 years down the track your risk is approximating those who have never had cancer. Large companies in general roll with the flow and if staff are off they simply accomodate it. Not sure what line of work you are looking at but if its a reasonable job it will help you enormously to find your new life. Hopefully it goes smoothly and the new job comes around soon. In the words of Ivanka Trump don't get angry - get everything. Jayne 

Thankyou again for taking the time to reply. Sorry I havent replied earlier. The last month has been a bit of a blur to be honest, but slowly, slowly Im trying my best to come through this. Ive decided to try on a new perspective. I may end up being a lonely old woman, but I'll be damned if I end up a bitter and twisted lonely old woman. I wont allow him to do that to me. Im trying to reclaim/retain the best parts of me.

But, just a quick update, Ive managed to get a job in customer services for a bank(providing I pass the vetting stage) and in the end I didnt disclose the cancer. My clinic appointment is before my start date and since its only a six month contract initailly, hopefully i wont have to.  I have an appointment with my solicitor on Tues to file for divorce. So, I am slowly clawing back some control in my life. 

Just want to say a special thankyou to you all. Your show of kindness and support despite going through so much heartbreak and uncertainty in your own lives means more than I could ever say, so once again ladies, thankyou.

Hugs to you all.