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10 Jan 2006

Father diagnosed with cancer
My father (55) was diagnosed with prostate cancer 3 days before christmas. What I cant understand is that it doesnt seem to bother him, he hasnt told any of his brothers about the cancer and we as a family ignore the problem in front of him, and its as if he tries to show everyone that this is only a small problem.

My question is: Is it his way of dealing with the cancer - by wanting no sympathy? And is there a way for me to help him dealing with the cancer?
Thank you!
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Expert
CyberShrink
cybershrink

01 Jan 0001

So sorry to hear of this sad news, CC. There are many ways in which someone tries to come to terms with bad news, and one of them is Denial, just not acepting that it is bad news, and trying to carry on as though nothing much is happening. SO long as this approach lets him feel comfortable AND does not interfere with him cooperating fully with whatever treatment the specialist recommends, it may be best not to interfere with it right now. It could be like the plaster on a broken limb. Help him by remainnin available, as Denial usually breaks down eventually, and the person may then feel a bit overwhelmed by the feelings thay they have been warding off. But make sure he follows good advice. Depending on when it is found, prostate cancer can be successfully reated, and even where the treatment is not entirely successful, some people live for many years with it, as it can at times be a slow and unaggressive form of cancer --- his specialist will be able to advise him and the family about this.
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