MORE and more women are diagnosed with breast cancer, yet little is heard about the emotional impact of the diagnosis – and the brutal but life-saving surgery that often follows – on the men in their lives. Daniel, a 59 year-old engineer recalled that” After my wife’s diagnosis, it never even crossed my mind to think about the impact her surgery would have on our sex life. My only thoughts were about making sure she made a full recovery. Like most engineers, I’m very pragmatic, so I went into practical mode.
“My reaction on hearing the diagnosis was not to throw my arms around her but to ask about the treatment processes and time frames for making her better. I thought 1 was helping but my approach has made her fearful at times. She’ll turn to me and say: ‘I don’t want solutions, I just want some sympathy from you!’ Thankfully it hasn’t driven us apart and resuming out love life almost immediately has helped us stay close.
“My wife, who is 54, needed her left breast removed last year and the medics managed to save the skin and the nipple which she was pleased about. However, immediately after the surgery which was done abroad, she was horrified to find her damaged breast was so high up it was almost on her shoulder! Thankfully it’s dropped closer to her right breast now, although it has never bothered me and certainly doesn’t make my wife less attractive. If anything, I love her more and my only thoughts have been about making sure she makes full recovery.
“I was an undergraduate when I lost my mother to breast cancer and couldn’t bear the thought of losing my beloved wife in the same way. As she’s just started Chemo, perhaps the worst is still to come for both of us. We’ve been warned she’s likely to experience mood swings and she’s been dreading losing her hair, so there will be times when I have to remember to offer sympathy and affection instead of solutions. But we’re determined to fight this together.”
When Smart’s wife was diagnosed with cancer ten years ago, it was in one breast, and this was removed within weeks. Unfortunately, the other breast had to be removed as the cancer had spread. After she’d made a semblance of recovery, we decided for her to have breast reconstruction. Despite telling her how much I still loved her, my wife was very unhappy about the way she looked. She couldn’t bear herself to look at the scars after the surgery and for months, she was too self-conscious to undress in front of me, let alone make love. I didn’t want her to feel under pressure and I told her so. It was a good thing I’d taken a second wife ever before her cancer surfaced. We both came from polygamous homes and I can well afford two wives!
“I realised though, that I had to make her want sex again especially when she continued to feel down about her appearance. When she asked if the cancer has changed how I felt about her. I asked her:
‘Who do you think I love – you or your breasts?” To give her confidence boost, two years after her second mastectomy, I supported her morally and financially to seek reconstructive surgery because I desperately wanted her to feel better about herself.
Unfortunately, the first few operations weren’t successful as she developed sepsis as a result of one of the operations and this took such a terrible toll that she was unable to even wash her hair or brush her teeth at times.
“My wife is stoical by nature but there have been days when she’s been so down that any mention of my second family can set her off crying. I’ve told her the fact she no longer have breasts did not make her less of a woman, but I knew it meant a lot to her – so all I could do was support her through the pain of the treatment to try to rebuild her body. Watching your wife suffer so much and come to close to death takes its toll … “.
The Wages Of Sin? (Humour)
A painter decorator called Wayne thins down his paint to make it go further. One day, he lands a big job to repaint the outside of the local church. So he erects the scaffolding, then buys the paint and thins it down as usual. Later, Wayne is up on the scaffolding painting, when there’s a clap of thunder. The rain pours down, washing off the paint, and knocking Wayne from the scaffolding to land amongst the grave-stones.
Wayne is no fool and knows this is judgement from the Almighty.
So he gets on his knees and cries: ‘Oh God! Forgive me! What should I do?’ An angry voice from above booms: ‘Repaint! Repaint!
And thin no more!’
Why Not Call A Spade A Spade? (Humour}
A woman is out driving with her young daughter and they get stuck behind a dustbin lorry. Suddenly, a vibrator flies out of the lorry and hits the car windscreen. ‘My! What a large insect!’ The embarrassed mum says, trying to protect her daughter. To which the girl replies: “I’m surprised it can fly with a willy like that!”