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The Other Side forums - suitable for mature readers! > The Other Side forums > Personal concerns
Sorry... just a moment of general hysterics. Move along, move along.
*Waits out the ranting, gestures, and heartfelt 'WOP'*

*Offers a cup of beverage of choice and an ear or shoulder as required*
Sorry, there is no ranting and such. I wrote it previously in a moment of hysterics after some rather horrible news hit me properly, but now I am over the hysterics. Thanks for the hot beverage and ear though. smile.gif
Actually, I changed my mind. Please help me. I am so confused and emotional and argh. You know, this is like a 5th time I've written a post like this then not posted it.

See, about 5 months ago I was playing the piano and I was talking to my mum who was on the computer behind me and I caught a glimpse of what she was looking at on the computer. It had said something like 'cervical cancer' and I got awfully scared. When she left the house for work I looked at the history and saw that she had been researching some medical problems she'd been having and cervical cancer was the most probable explanation. I got terrified and asked my sister to look at the history and tell me what she made of it. But then I ran out of the house before she could answer me because I could sense I might cry and I used to never cry at all. When I returned my sister told me that she didn't think much of it. She had known that my mother had gone for some tests but she hadn't received the results.

I didn't know anything for about 5 months and had almost forgotten about it when about a month ago I went and had a really great day out with my mum and then when I got back I became so sad simply because we had had so much fun and I couldn't help but keep in the back of mind that my mum was always thinking she may have cancer. That night I also heard my parents talking about test results and heard the word cancer come up a few times and it just scared me so much. I spent the next week just crying my eyes out. I spent about an hour sitting in the train station just crying and crying which certainly caused some spectacle. About 2 weeks ago I heard my mum having a rather heated argument on the telephone saying that she had still not received the results and some other stuff which I would rather not repeat about what was wrong with her but made me even more terrified.

Then last week a large brown envelope arrived and I asked my mum what was in it and she told me that I mustn't open it and that it was only for her. I saw in the evening that it had NHS on the top of it and I could hear my parents talking about 'options', although the options could also have been to do with accounts because they were discussing this too, that evening.

And now my dad is taking her out to all these lovely places and even giving her a surprise trip to New York in December which I'm sure is lovely for her but gives me the feeling that she does have cancer for sure. I spent about 20 minutes walking up and down the stairs near midnight last night debating whether to ask my dad if she did have cancer but decided against it when I got a lump in my throat and just had to lean against the wall.

I am just so confused. See, I used to have a rather good relationship with my mum but it has started to get worse and worse and I find it hard not to have an argument with her every few minutes. She just has some habits which annoy me so much and I have habits which annoy her so much. But then sometimes we have massive arguments where she goes absolutely mad and I become so terrified. She is not mad in an angry way, she is mad in a mad way. But I think short temper runs on her side of the family. But I am feeling so guilty for still having arguments with her and I don't just want to stop because that will show that I am only being nice to her because she is unwell. I just don't know. I mean, I wish we had a better relationship and I love my mother to bits, more than she will ever know. But I don't think that she does know. And sometimes she asks me if the devil sent me to destroy her and I wonder if I am and I just can't stop and argh.

And then I would hate for this to happen to my dad. I have had a bad relationship with him too recently but we are once again getting closer. I just don't like it when he puts his hand on my shoulder or something, I am getting too touchy and violent. But he has had such a hard life. I mean, his father left when he was young and he never talked to him again until he saw him on his death bed. He had to leave school at 16 to get a job to earn money to keep his family fed and then a few years later he found his mum dead. He doesn't deserve to have a wife with cancer! He is such a noble man.

I have had a good day concerning my relationship with my mother because neither of us have shouted even once yet.

Also part of me hates myself because sometimes I imagine what would happen if my mum died and that is a horrible thing to imagine. It would be so awful, with my sister gone to university, it would just be my father and I. I am so scared.

I think I know some people who have survived cancr but I know of more people who've died and I think to myself 'I'm only 14, what am I to do?!'. And I find it hard to have fun without having the thought in the back of my mind that mother probaby isn't. But maybe someone here has some good advice. I think people here are often quite noble.
{Gothic Angel}
First things first *huuuuugs Emma*

Just a couple of points from that rant before I go getting all worldy-wise on you (which I'm not, I just act it well tongue.gif):

I am just so confused. See, I used to have a rather good relationship with my mum but it has started to get worse and worse and I find it hard not to have an argument with her every few minutes... <rest of paragraph>

I'm like that with my mum, and have been since I was about three, including the short temper running in families and the little annoying habits which get on each other's nerves. What I can say on the subject is: I know it's the most incredibly frustrating, hurtful thing in the world at the moment, particularly with your worries, but honest to God, it does get better. I think it happens to a lot of teenagers regardless, trite as that sounds, but it is a whole lot worse when you're both stressed out and have short fuses. I sympathise. I found the best way to cope with it is just t focus on the light at the end of the tunnel - either leaving home, if you don't think it'll get better, or making up and being friends again if you believe that it will (and, honestly, it does). I wouldn't worry overly about it being something related to your mum being ill - it'll happen anyway when you're 14, however much it sucks.

It becomes harder to deal with when someone in a position of power over you "goes mad". If it's not too upsetting to think about, can I ask if she's doing anything like this:

- Accusing you of saying things you didn't say/ignoring or forgetting things you did
- Misinterpreting things you've said and twisting them into other meanings to make you sound bad
- Accusing you of "hating her", "doing things deliberately to hurt/upset her", or anything else which implies you intentionally set out to make her life unpleasent.
- Completely losing her rag and screaming/yelling at you, with agressive body language etc etc
- Misremembering or completely forgetting negative things which she's done
- Interrupting or refusing to listen to you, especially after she's asked you to explain something
- Changing what she's said to something else if you point out a flaw in her argument
- Saying the same things over and over, even though you already got them
- Confusing emotion with logic

If not, disregard the next paragraph.

... there are a few others, but basically, that's when my mum used to do when she went crazy at me. I've come to the conclusion that the reason they do this stuff is because they're beginning to realise they're losing control of you. If you have an adult opinion or reason, they don't want to see that, because that means you're growing up and will go away, so they have to make you feel like a child again, and the way they do that is to abuse the power they have over you - essentially, if they scream at you, you can't scream back because they're your parent, and you live in their house, with their food and their clothes at their whim. I know it's a really bad way to do it, but if you have a short fuse and you panic, it rarely comes out well. It's something that has to be dealt with over time, and if you can cope with it, the best way to deal is to override the natural instinct to scream back, slam doors, walk out, etc, and just sit there and be perfectly calm. Which, I have to say, is extremely difficult, because they will then accuse you of being maipulative, which hurts, but at least it calms them down long enough to find out what the hell you did. People in conversation and argument will match your voice levels and body language, so if you don't get agitated, they will find it hard to stay that way for long.

Also in that paragraph - Your mum doesn't know that you're worried about her and have suspicions that she's ill, clearly. If you start attempting to be nice, she's not going to think that you're doing it out of pity, because she doesn't know you suspect. I doubt she would think that even if she knew you suspected anyway. Most parents understand that the majority of children do actually want to have a good relationship with their parents, which is where you seem to be coming from.

Your dad, whatever else, married your mum. I don't know the specifics, but for the vast majority of cases, that means he loves her. A truly noble man, as you say he is, will go on loving her, and support her through cancer, if she does have it. He's doing nice things for her, so he obviously does want to support her. Without meaning to be a cynic, and without meaning to dis men in general, it is my experience that if a bloke can't cope, he buggers off (witness my dad). Your dad hasn't done that, which is a good sign he's coping OK at the moment, and whilst I'm sure he appreciates your love and support, you worrying about him won't help either of you (and believe me, I'm totally guilty of worrying at inappropriate times as well). What would probably be the most useful thing for him is if you could put your mind to rest about him, and focus on helping him look after your mum (and again, I remind you you don't know for sure if she has cancer).

And there are a <i>lot</i> of people in the world who worry and worry and mentally take things to the worst case scenario in their minds. That is absolutely nothing to feel guilty about. It's not wishing your mum was dead, or hoping for it, it's just logically extending a chain of events to the worst possible outcome in order to develop a coping strategy. The only person it's even remotely damaging is you, so stop feeling guilty. You don't need that on top of everything else.

I would wait until you feel you've had a good day and talk to your mum. There's no point in asking your dad about it - that will just fuel arguments because it will seem to your mum like you went behind her back. It maybe ok at times at the moment, because you don't know for sure so there's still the possibility it will be ok when you think about how bad it could get, but you need to know. Explain to your mum that you've overheard some things by accident and you're worried already - it might be that if she is ill, she hasn't told you so that you won't worry. And remember that she might not have said anything because there's nothing wrong at all smile.gif And if she is ill, then you can get her to explain, or look up what's wrong, and at least you'll be going into the future prepared rather than uncertain and worrying.

That's the best advice I can give you from my perspective and experience, anyway. I really hope it turns out ok for you. *more huuuugs and cookies*
QUOTE ({Gothic Angel} @ Sep 22 2006, 11:40 AM) *
I've come to the conclusion that the reason they do this stuff is because they're beginning to realise they're losing control of you. If you have an adult opinion or reason, they don't want to see that, because that means you're growing up and will go away, so they have to make you feel like a child again, and the way they do that is to abuse the power they have over you - essentially, if they scream at you, you can't scream back because they're your parent, and you live in their house, with their food and their clothes at their whim.

*Agrees with the above*

*hugs BAIT*

*doesn't really have anything more she cuold add to the subject*
Wow, thank you GA! This has been so useful to me.

I find that my mum blows things out of proportion more often and sometimes she says things like 'What are you trying to do? Destroy me? Are you sent from the devil?' but I don't take it to heart. But I find that when she goes mad as a defense mechanism I get this large grin on my face despite the fact I am not happy in any wayand usually I don't shout back I just get scared and I have gotten into the awful habit of making snide remarks and out-witting my mother because no one is logical at all when they argue.

But this past week I have had a lovely relationship with my mum. We've had some chats which didn't include any form of shouting which is a start. It's been such a lovely week.

I do doubt that my dad will leave though, I just feel so sorry for him.

I do fear asking my mum though, I don't want her to feel like she has to tell me. I asked her once in the summer holidays because her and my dad were discussing her next hospital appointment and I said 'Why do you need to go to the hospital?'. She said 'Just for tests'. It probably was for tests but it didn't seem like she wanted to divulge any further.

I find that the emotional thing comes in bouts. I have kept myself rather busy this week and haven't been having too much fun so I think I haven't really had the time to ponder all the awful possibilities that could happen.

Thanks again GA, you've made me feel considerably happier. You are good at psychology? smile.gif And thank you for the hugs.
{Gothic Angel}
I know nothing about psychology, you just remind me of me, and I have four more years experience of living with a personality like this to draw on tongue.gif

I also have about eight years' experience of being an agony aunt and being the sensible designated driver member of the group tongue.gif I'm glad you're feeling better smile.gif Let us know how things turn out, yeah?
She's going to hospital more now. I don't know what to do. I can't go a day without getting hysterical. Please help me. I don't know what you can do. There is nothing to do. And it doesn't help that my sister hasn't talked to me for a week. No one knows I know she has cancer. You just can't escape the fact, you know? I just want to curl up and disappear, but so that no one ever new I had ever existed. And the arguments are getting so awful with my mother now. It's more physical fighting now. And it's really dashed any remaining confidence I ever had. I can barely get even one syllable words out without stuttering all too much. I'm just breaking down, you know. And argh. There's no point is there really. I do have a lovely friend who I owe so much to. He is so kind to me. And he understands a lot. But I shouldn't just dump my problems on him, he's not happy anyway. And nothing really matters does it. Arrrggghhh. I just want to run away from EVERYTHING and start again, and for everyone from where I am now to forget me and not have any recollection of me. I could start again in France. I could ahve my mind blanked by hypnotism and then everything would be right again.

I'm sorry. I'm just a wreck. Just need somewhere to vent.
I'm so sorry that things are so shit for you right now. *hug*

But it's perfectly alright to be upset--you're certainly not the only one who's gotten this way after someone has cancer. Keep in mind that you're lovely and that it's possible that your mother is acting this way because, she, like you, is scared. Perhaps she is being secretive about her illness because she doesn't want anyone to treat her differently, and the fact that you know about it is making her afraid that you've started acting differently.

My mom's aunt used to have these all-out blazing fights with her about her political beliefs and how she raised me, and then was found to have a large tumor in her brain. My great-aunt tried to keep the fights going (and it was pretty easy, what with chemo and other treatments leaving her real anxious and cranky) to keep things normal and to make sure that my mom wouldn't start getting "all mushy" or concerned. It was a pride thing, and also acting out of concern for her niece. But to my mom, it was outward rejection of all the ways she had tried to help, and she was understandably upset.

Please get plenty of sleep and, if it helps, you can try to blank your mind if you feel yourself getting hysterical. Pick something to focus on that you are truly interested in and think on it for as long and hard as you can until you feel yourself begin to calm down. You may have to do this for a long while but it is effective and often helps me get to sleep when I am obsessing over something. Complicated things like musical scores or math problems can work really well in this case.

You might want to try talking to your sister. If nothing else, she might have suggestions as to how to not fight with your mom. If she doesn't know about the cancer, you don't have to talk about that, but as she has eyes in her head she has probably noticed that you've been upset, and being your sister, cares for you.

Talking in general is always good--come on here and you know that people will listen and probably be better at advising what to do than I. Try to stay calm, get lots of sleep, be available to your mum if she wants to talk calmly and get out of the house to walk and think if anything seems to be overwhelming. If there's a private space you can find to be when you are feeling crappy, don't hesitate to go there. We're all wishing you the best.
*huggles* I'm sure it'll turn out OK in the end. Just hope for the best, and keep her happy. smile.gif

Both my aunt and uncle have skin cancer at the moment, and now my mom thinks she has it too. She went to her friend Harry about it (he's a doctor) and he said if the symptoms get worse to come back. The things that worry me about it is one, she's a radiologist, and I know x-ray waves aren't good for you, and neither is a lot of sun (welcome to Florida, the sunshine state..). So yeah.. Good luck!
{Gothic Angel}
*squeeze* What elphaba said. I'm sorry it sucks atm hun.
Would you consider telling her you know? It may not change anything, but then at least she would understand there is a reason for your emotions at the moment.
I'm crap with mothers, but it may help.
*more hugs* I wish there was something we could do to make things ok.
How have things gone?

Would like to insert cheerful note of optimism. Even if it is cancer there is a good rate of cure when it's caught early. Your Mom could be fine soon.

*Adds a hug*
I don't know. I haven't had any sort of guts to ask my parents if there's anything wrong and I haven't reall overheard or seen anything related to it recently either. My mum is still going to the hospital quite often, but although it is plaguing my mind, I am a lot less hysterical than I was! Thank you for the thought! *hug*
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