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The Anger of Cancer 

Exploring the expression of anger during cancer treatment.

While dealing with lung cancer, my friend Nancy K. Miller seethed in her blog at pharmaceutical advertisements and hospital commercials that bombard us daily with pictures of joyous cancer patients supported by doting intimates. These jubilant characters have nothing to do with the frustrated people we know who periodically erupt in righteous indignation. I often must remind myself that anger needs to be understood as the flip side of the roiling fear that cancer instills in patients and also in caregivers.

Over the past few years, every member of my support group has bristled over well-intentioned but hurtful relatives.

Carrol enjoyed her Joan of Arc post-chemo look until her 82-year-old mother asked, “Why aren’t you wearing your wig to cover up?”

Carrol’s loyal husband, cross at her decision to retire, refused to discuss end-of-life planning. He wanted her to keep on fighting, whereas she wanted to cope with the recurrence that she expected and that did, to his great sorrow, soon end her life.

Our group ponders the marital feuds of a woman weakened by late-stage disease. Her traveling husband insists on a hired helper in the house, but she does not want her privacy invaded. With less equanimity, we hear Dana recount the desolation of an acquaintance whose partner deemed her reconstructed breasts “repulsive.”

Read Full Article: The Anger of Cancer – The New York Times

Read Full Article: The Anger of Cancer – The New York Times

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