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Thread: marriage changes and how to cope...after cancer treatment

  1. #1

    marriage changes and how to cope...after cancer treatment

    I am the wife of a 60 yr old man who received hormone therapy and brachytherapy 3 years ago. There have been complications, especially with erectile function and libido. I am interested in talking to men and women (wives especially) about marriage after prostate cancer--what changes, how to cope. Anybody out there?
    I am the wife of a 60 yr old man who received hormone therapy and brachytherapy 3 years ago. I am interested in talking to men and women (wives especially) about marriage after prostate cancer--what changes, how to cope. Anybody out there?

  2. #2
    Just saw your post. My husband is 57 and had his surgery last January. He also had one hormone shot (which turns out he did not need) The Doctor said his nerves were spared and he should not have a problem with erections, libido, etc. but the hormone made things more difficult. It has been over a year. The hormone has not yet completely disappeared - his testosterone level is still 0 - so we do not know how long, if ever, it will take for him to be anywhere near normal again. He has been very wonderful throughout all of it. - Has had some weight gain, had hot flashes, all kinds of wonderful side affects from the shot, but I wonder how long his patience will last. As for me, I try and be supportive, am not sure just what I should do as far as sex is concerned. Think if he has no libido, it is probably good to leave him alone. What are you doing?

    Terry

  3. #3
    Regular User
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    35
    There has been a lot of people that have read this, 1358 I think, and only one response?

    I am new to this and wondering also. Husband had surgery in December of 2007 so we are just starting on the journey to what now. I will do what it takes to help get everything working again if possible.

    I will say he is at 4 weeks, can have an orgasm with urine leakage, but only gets about 1/2 of what use to so far so may need Viagra or Cialis. Hopefully next doctor trip.

  4. #4
    Dear Sanjis and Worried Wife,
    It was amazing to me after so many months that somebody has answered my post! Thanks for answering the question, "Is anybody out there?" I thought for the longest time that I was the only wife whose husband was having difficulties healing, in all senses of the word. Hormone injections dealt his libido a huge blow. Since his treatment in 2002, he hasn't had a single sexual feeling until very recently. At first he was angry and didn't want to deal with it or talk about it at all, felt he wasn't a man anymore. But I cajoled him into joining Man to Man together (local chapter), and we've met several people who are knowledgeable about what wives go through--one is actually the wife of a urologist I know, who hears all sorts of sad stories at her husband's office, where she works. Through this friendship, and my husband's recent interest in acupuncture, things seem to be waking up again--after so long. As far as leaving him alone in his libido-less state, I did that for a long time--at least gave up approaching him sexually. I suffered terribly, feeling very lonely--and he suffered in his loneliness; and all I can say is that somehow you have to reach out to each other. I think it took a while for him to realize that my loneliness was just like his, only from another perspective. I am writing a book about our experience and may actually launch a website for wives to tell their stories--not an interactive site, but a sort of Zine, so people can come and read and then go away and think about it. Would you find that interesting? If so, I'd love to know. I'm finally feeling that we have the beginning of control over what happened to us. This is SO HARD, surviving the aftermath of these treatments, with little or no information. Yes, he had hot flashes and weight gain--those were the things the doctors warned him about--but not the total loss of libido.
    I'd love to know what anybody has to say about this.
    Whenever I get the site/Zine up and operating, I'll post an announcement here.
    Meanwhile, what do you do to cope with what's been happening? My coping mechanism turned out to be writing about it....
    I am the wife of a 60 yr old man who received hormone therapy and brachytherapy 3 years ago. I am interested in talking to men and women (wives especially) about marriage after prostate cancer--what changes, how to cope. Anybody out there?

  5. #5
    I am so happy to read your responses. I am surprised that we have not heard from more wives to date. I have to say that my husband's spirits have been good. I think he expects everything to get back to normal eventially but, lately, I am not as sure as he. I don't tell him that - want him to keep positive. I figure as long as his testosterone is so low, there is very little going on, so, it may not be time to really worry yet. I think your idea for a zine is a good one. Prostate cancer seems to be so explosive now I am sure people would love to have a place to go to share information...

    Terry aka worried wife

  6. #6
    my urologist prescribed viagra when I went for my first exam after RP surgery 50 mg a night at bedtime back in march 2007. he wrote prescription for 100mg and told me to cut in half. It is starting to work. Yes it can be lonesome the man is afraid to start anything and the woman is also afraid that if she does it will make the man feel worse if he can't perform. We have to realize there are many ways to be intimate and try to work at these and the other may eventually work. We need to realize our lives and time we spend together can and is still rewarding without an erection. Life is more precious. If erections don't arrive there are other things to try shots implants vacuum device all is not forever lost so we need to all hang in together and support one another. By the way I was 57 when diagnosed. Lets all hang in there. Sometimes we need to go back to starting out at first base again which always was great. Second and third base can be a blast to.

  7. #7
    He has gone the Viagra root, also has used the pump. I do think there is a little more going on than previously, which is fine, but I don't want to put any pressure on him. I agree that massages, kisses, etc. are wonderful and I am certainly willing to wait for anything more - I am just worried that I might not be doing enough for him.

    WW

  8. #8
    I meant the Viagra route - must have been a Freudian slip

  9. #9

    Wives of Husbands with Prostate Cancer

    I am new to this site. I have been to numerous sites and tried to educate myself whenever possible. I stumbled accross your postings and was so suprised that they are so inline with what I too am dealing with. My life was turned upside down 1 year ago- Jan 2007. Since then it has been a constant rollercoaster. My husband is 60 years old and diagnosed with Advanced Prostate Cancer. We have slammed his body with everything available and he has & is doing great. I have to say the hardest struggle for me is staying positive through this and trying to stay open to him. He used to be one of the most kind, caring, understanding and very nurturing men. He has been the leader in our relationship. But in the last year he has changed not only sexually but emotionally and that is so very difficult to accept, realize and deal with. It takes alot of work and we are both very frightend. But we are trying hard to make everything work. We have been so involved with the medical issues & treatments that we have not taken any steps towards the sexual side yet. I pray everyday that we make it through and am so thankful that he is alive and happy and has been so lucky with his treatments that the quality of his life is still very tolerable. So I am definately interested in more communication in regards to Wives of husbands with PC. Thanks for your time. Pam

  10. #10

    Wives of Husbands with Prostate Cancer

    I am new to this site. I have been to numerous sites and tried to educate myself whenever possible. I stumbled accross your postings and was so suprised to read about women that are struggling and dealing with the same feelings I deal with daily.

    My life was turned upside down 1 year ago- Jan 2007. Since then it has been a constant rollercoaster. My husband is 60 years old and diagnosed with Advanced Prostate Cancer. We have slammed his body with everything available and he has & is doing great. I have to say the hardest struggle for me is staying positive through this and trying to stay open to him. He used to be one of the most open, caring, kind, understanding and nurturing men. He has been the leader in our relationship. But in the last year he has changed. Obviously sexually we have lost almost everything but the daily stuggles with the emotional side is sometime so very difficult to accept, realize and deal with. It takes alot of work and at times we are both very frightend and I have to constantly push myself to be aware of his mental state. We struggle daily, weekly monthly trying hard to make everything work and to be open with each other. We have been so involved with the medical issues & treatments that we have not taken any steps towards the sexual side yet. I pray everyday that we make it through this to continue to be a happy and alive couple. I am thankful that he is alive today but still very scared of what the future has to offer us. I hope that his quality of his life does not decline anymore. So I am definately interested in more communication in regards to Wives of husbands with PC. Thanks for your time. Pam

 

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