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Stubborn son/unhappy mom.

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  • Stubborn son/unhappy mom.

    Hello. My son was diagnosed with stage 1 seminoma almost a year ago. He handled everything VERY well. We were all very impressed with his ability to compartmentalize, make light of, accept and persevere thru his diagnosis and surgery. I took him on a big trip 3 days later to get his mind off things and for a graduation gift. He drove the whole way! He graduated 8 days after surgery, so there was a lot of distraction. Right after diagnosis and surgery he was totally on board with the suggestions from my doctor and myself with regard to nutrition and supplement support. We have eaten mostly organic foods, have stayed away from toxic chemicals in our home and for personal use his whole life and have taken supplements. I worked at a health food store for 3 years. I have been studying natural health since he was born. Then, seemingly suddenly he rejected all of that and started eating fast food, sugary things and went back to dairy milk, all of which are very unhealthy for anyone, but especially those with a history of cancer. He acts resentful of good health and even says he doesn't care about his cancer and that he's ready to go. All of that is most likely his typical successful attempts to infuriate/upset me, which is one of his pastimes. He has also stated that he's fine and the cancer is not coming back. He has said he is depressed. I believe him. It runs in our family and he has been through SO much in a short time other than the cancer, but especially including that. He was excited about the LiveStrong packet I got sent to him, but he would not accept any counseling from them or the cancer society or the counselor he has seen sometimes since his dad and I divorced. I want to help him more than anything in the world, but I don't know how! He won't even make his own appointments for tests and rechecks and wants me to although he is resentful that I "don't treat him like an adult" and gets angry if I try to help him with things. (Trust me! He is NOT behaving like an adult and does live at home) I don't think he has dealt with any of the big issues on his plate and I know that is not good for his physical or psychological health. I'm at a loss...
    5/19/14 18yr old son felt a lump.
    2 hrs later pediatrician did exam and sent us straight to ultrasound.
    5/21/14 CT
    5/23/14 Oncology consult.
    5/27/14 Right I/O
    Stage 1 Seminoma
    6/5/14 high school graduation!
    7/2/14 brain MRI at my insistence, clear.
    Continued surveillance/testing. MRI's to replace CT's!

  • #2
    Hey there sorry you are going through this. Everything I'm about to say is coming from someone who went through the same thing as your son but a lot more treatment involved. The good thing about testicular cancer is that his diet doesn't really matter as far as cancer is concerned. Obviously eating like crap all the time is bad for anyone but eating bad isn't necessarily going to make him have a recurrence. That may very well be the case with other cancers but not with testicular cancer. Oddly enough there's been a good amount of people who were eating really healthy diets when diagnosed, myself included I was also vegetarian. I feel like some people belive that eating like crap will cause cancer and if you have this perspective, I'm by no means trying to argue. Just stating what's fact really. Anyways, on the topic of your son being depressed and so on there's really not much you can do until he gets over it. Your son had it very easy compared to people who are already doing second or even third line chemothrapies because nothing seems to be working for them. He should really be thankful all he needed was one surgery. I did all that counseling stuff too and it doesn't really help unless he's the type of person where listening to someone else might help him. He has to get over this on his own really because that's how it was with me. I woke up one day and said I was done being a cry baby and it was time to live my life. Something that also was pushed on to me was anti depressants. But honestly, I felt like killing myself even more on those. Something that did help though, was anxiety medication. That made me chill out a bit and not worry so much. I know that as a paren't it must be hard to watch him go through this but he will get over it eventually. Be there for him which I'm sure you already do. But this will pass.
    3/11/14 - Right orchiectomy
    non seminoma - stage IIC 100% embroyal carcinoma
    2 enlarged lymph nodes
    3/31/14-5/27/14 - BEPx3
    lymph nodes decrease in size but still about 3 cm each
    7/16/14 - RPLND - found only dead cancer


    • #3
      Hello Electra, I totally understand what you are going thru as a mom. My son was 18 and had just graduated high school when he started having issues. He went thru 3 1/2 months of misdiagnoses before he was diagnosed with testicular cancer. I agree with Daniel about the fact that eating junky doesn't cause testicular cancer re-occurrence. I have worked hard on trying to change my son's diet based on the fact that he was told by his oncologist that he had a increased chance of secondary cancer due to having chemotherapy. He is a sophomore at college. He can't eat organic on the college meal plan. He has made changes like he no longer ever drinks soda, he watches his fast food intake, but he is still a 20 year old. His friends like to eat out at Cook-Out at 12 midnight and he goes with them. And he eats burgers and fries when he's out. He is in remission and truly living life. He listens to my advice about eating healthy, etc., but it is still his life. It's his decision and as a mom, I have to accept that. I totally understand you want the absolute best for your son because you love him so much, but you do have to let him make his own decisions. My son had bouts of severe anxiety through his surveillance, so worried that the cancer would come back, but he has pushed through it. Be patient and give him space.
      My best advice to you is making sure your son goes through his surveillance protocol as laid out by his oncologist. Although your son feels "cured", seminoma surveillance can be even more long term then non-seminoma due to it being not as aggressive. Be patient even though it drives you crazy, be supportive, and keep him on track through his surveillance. I pray you and he work through the "bumps" in the road.
      9/6/13 Left I/O. 18 year old son diagnosed 9/13/13 Stage 2C. Path report: embryonal and yolk sac with spermatic cord involvement and lymphatic invasion BEP x 3 finished 11/25/13. PC-RPLND with Dr. Foster at IU on 1/21/14. Found only dead cancer! Surveillance as of 1/23/14. All clear as of 5/2018.


      • #4
        A certain amount of rebellion from parental authority is pretty normal at his age, even without the cancer. Afraid there is not much you can do about that. Please d make sure he sticks to the surveillance protocol, though, even if he gets mad at you. Hopefully e will see the need to do it himself soon.

        Jan, 1975: Right I/O, followed by RPLND
        Dec, 2009: Left I/O, followed by 3xBEP