Prostate cancer concerns the partner too!
Whether your partner has already been treated for prostate cancer or is currently receiving treatment for the disease, there can be many changes in your relationship and in your life. Some partners or spouses may not feel comfortable asking for support, while others may be very open about their needs and feelings.
The way he chooses to manage his emotions following his diagnosis or the side effects that result from these treatments is entirely up to him. Yet, however your partner manages his new life, there are things you can do as a supporter to help him during this time.
Listen, learn and ask
Knowledge can be powerful, and your partner can sometimes be too overwhelmed to seek treatment options, medications, and other aspects of his care. Spending time alone to learn more about prostate cancer, the treatment options available to your partner, or how to manage the side effects can help you support him better and relieve some of his stress.
That said, it is important to note that information overload is possible and that there are less than reliable resources. For these reasons, it is essential to take breaks during your research and to use only verified or professional information, published on credible websites such as the PROCURE website.
You can also accompany your partner during his medical appointments if he is comfortable with your presence by his side. If you are accompanying him on these visits, it may be helpful to listen or take notes. Your partner may feel overwhelmed by the news he receives or the different options presented to him. In these cases, having an attentive additional listener (or note taker) can help remember the little details of the appointment. It may also be helpful to keep a list of your questions or any questions your partner has or has had to guide the conversation during these visits.
Be an accomplice of your partner if necessary
Your partner may need an additional voice when dealing with friends, family, healthcare professionals, insurance companies and anyone else who may have questions or concerns about his fight against prostate cancer. It is important to let your partner respond, but also to be ready in case he needs additional support.
This support could take the form of answers to embarrassing questions, explaining further lifestyle changes as a result of treatment-related side effects (such as the need to avoid a specific event due to the lack of accessible bathrooms if your partner suffers from urinary incontinence), or just lend your voice when your partner is tired. Always make sure that he has given his permission to share this personal information with others. Giving him the space to be his own advocate, while being ready when needed, can make a big difference.
Take the time to visit each of our pages on this website, as well as our YouTube channel, in order to get familiar with the disease with our expert lectures, our section on available resources, the support that is offered to you.
Do you have any questions or concerns? Above all, do not hesitate. Contact us at 1 855 899-2873 to discuss with a nurse specializing in uro-oncology. It's simple and free, like all our services.
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Sources and References
What you need to know about your partner's prostate cancer. UsToo.org. http://www.ustoo.org/PDFs/Partners_Program_Guidebook.pdf. Accessed January 10, 2020.
Written by PROCURE. © All rights reserved - 2020