Wednesday, August 3, 2011

The Young Adult Dilemma

Issues for young adult survivors can be very different from any other age group affected by cancer. Managing a family, being able to have a family, and dating all suddenly seem difficult and surreal.

Going through treatment may spark early menopause or decrease fertility in women and men, and fertility treatments can be very expensive. The issue of raising a family spans all stages of life, but it can prove seemingly impossible for those who have been ill.

What place does this take in your life now? It seems like you don’t have time to stop. The fear of losing your job hovers, especially if you’re the breadwinner. The mere thought of dating seems tedious and foreboding, as you’re unsure when and how to share your health history, and if you’ll be able to find people to relate to.

In times like these, it is essential to reach out and use your resources. The American Cancer Society is able to connect you to people your age with similar struggles. Now is the time to accept help and look for support. Realize you can’t do it all and be forgiving. You are human and have to take care of yourself. By establishing a good communication structure with your medical team, the lines will be open for any help you may receive. A key factor to keep in mind is that support can come in many different forms.

What types of support have proven the most helpful to you or someone you know?

Are you interested in being part of Presbyterian's new young survivor committee? Email us to let us know! presbycancercenter@novanthealth.org

~ Julie, Buddy Kemp Cancer Support Center