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Thread: helping my boyfriend cope

  1. #1
    New User
    Join Date
    Apr 2010

    helping my boyfriend cope

    My boyfriend and I have been together for 2 years, the entire length of his father's stage4 prostate cancer diagnosis.... His doctors have given him a month to live, my boyfriend's graduation from college is in one month and one day, his grandmother passed this week, and i don't know how to help him cope. I am doing everything I can and he is just pushing me away. He actually broke up with me today which I can't understand because I thought I was being the perfect girlfriend with helping him cope. I just don't know how to help him and I know he feels out of control and so stressed. He has really helped me so much through the years and I just want to give back. Any advice is soooo much appreciated.

  2. #2
    Administrator Top User pbj11's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007

    I'm sorry to hear you're in this situation. Please continue to be as supportive and loving as possible, even with his behavior. You seem to understand that he's all over the place emotionally, which is very normal. I commend you so highly for looking into ways to help him.

    This really touches my heart as my daughter's boyfriend (at the time and ex now!) did NOTHING to assist her and made the process of losing her Dad worse than it needed to be.

    As long as he knows you are firm in your support, will always lend an ear or a hug, and love him unconditionally, then you are doing things the right way. He's hurting very bad. A woman's heart naturally knows how to handle it, so go with your female instincts. It's all about him and your maturity level in seeking advice shows. Give him room and be there when he reaches out. Don't take it personally. No matter how close one is to a family member, they aren't the ones losing a loved one. Family tend to pull in very close toward the end and shut out others --- it happened to me with my siblings. They had no clue -- nor did my kid's friends, that things were crashing and burning over at our home.

    God love you and may he bless all of those touched by this disease,
    Husband diagnosed with NSCLC Stage IV in 3/2005. Fought & lived over 2 1/2 years with multiple lines of treatment.

    Post describing our journey: http://cancerforums.net/viewtopic.ph...er=asc&start=0

    Left my embrace to live with our Heavenly Father in October of 2007 and now breathes with ease forever. I will miss this gentle, giving soul with the easy smile for the rest of my days, but have faith we will be together again. He's just getting a little break from me!

  3. #3
    Administrator Top User brainman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Blog Entries
    Hi willi173. I too am sorry about your situation. It is impossible to say why he is pushing you away; there are so many possibilities. Here are the major ones that I can think of at this time of the night:
    1. Some people, especially men, do not want to be a burden on others... especially someone they love.
    2. It is possible to help too much. People experiencing grief do need support and care. In some cases, the best and most loving thing their family and friends do is give them space when space is needed and a hug when a hug is needed.
    3. Sometimes people who are sick are also angry... not at any specific thing but just angry. Anger that is not addressed properly can cause people to withdraw from people around them... again, especially those individuals closest to them.

    Unfortunately, there is not much you can do at this point. All that you can do is to remain available to him. Let him know that you care not just about him but also about his father and grandmother.

    Good luck and keep us informed.
    Long-term cancer survivor
    1992 Astrocytoma grade 2, left motor strip
    2005 Recurrence this time said to be an Oligodendroglioma grade 3, same location.
    My Story Part 1: http://cancerforums.net/viewtopic.php?t=2528
    My Story Part 2: http://cancerforums.net/viewtopic.php?p=7350
    My Story Part 3: http://cancerforums.net/viewtopic.php?t=8029

  4. #4
    Regular User
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Hi Willi173,

    I have been on the other side of that road. My father was diagnosed with NSCLC in April '08 and I started to push my girlfriend, friends and family away.

    I shut down emotionally. I felt numb. I broke up with my girlfriend after my dad passed away. I couldn't stand to be around anyone. It was a very difficult experience and now I thank god every day that my girlfriend, friends and family were just as stubborn as me.

    When your boyfriend finally comes to terms with what is happening, he will need you to be there.

    Just be patient and keep trying to talk with him.


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