Topic: Feeling humiliated trying to find an escort (a rant/vent)

Forum: Singles With Breast Cancer — Singles with breast cancer who want to connect.

Posted on: Mar 10, 2022 06:50AM

Posted on: Mar 10, 2022 06:50AM

salamandra wrote:

I have a procedure (related to potential side effects of the hormone treatment) that requires sedation.

I have had to ask multiple people to be my escort and none of them have been able to come. I honestly feel humiliated.

I ended up asking someone I don't know all that well, who I just happened to see the week before, and who lives nearby, and she is going to come for me. If she'd said no, I think I would have been crushed. And might have needed to reschedule the procedure. Again.

I hate this!

I am thinking that if a doctor thinks we need a procedure that requires an escort after, insurance should damn well cover the costs of someone to meet us and accompany us home.

One of my closest friends, whom I'd normally ask first, is recovering (very well and fast, thank goodness) from a stroke. I am watching her treatment and what a key role her husband is playing, and especially will play once she is able to go home but still needs help, and I can't help but think how much worse of a nightmare it would all be for someone like me, without a spouse.

I hate this all so much!

90% of the time I am honestly content to be single, and maybe 9% of the time I am wistful but content. 99% of the time I absolutely feel like I can manage my own life just fine as a single person. But g*d damn it!

I also feel limited in who I can ask, because how can I ask a friend who has kids and is so much busier than I am anyway, and lugging kids around adds a whole other level (we live in a city and most of us don't have cars), and I don't love asking someone who would never ask me because they themselves have a spouse.

I *love* where I live. I just recently started working at a new school that is better than I possibly could have imagined. My life is generally sustainable and workable. But this incident alone has me spinning thinking about moving to the city where my siblings live. I love and miss them too, but I hate this feeling.

Ugh. Anyway, I am posting this here to express feelings and hoping to connect with others for some emotional processing and solidarity.

(I'm not angry at my friends, really. The ones who have said no are all out of town, or have prior commitments. I'm glad that my other single friends are out there living their lives and doing cool stuff. I just feel so sad).


Dx at 39. 1.8cm. Oncotype 9. Dx 9/19/2018, IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 10/18/2018 Lumpectomy; Lymph node removal Hormonal Therapy 11/1/2018 Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone) Radiation Therapy 12/3/2018 Whole breast: Breast Hormonal Therapy 12/19/2019 Fareston (toremifene)
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Mar 11, 2022 07:29AM rah2464 wrote:

Salamandra wish I were close to you I would volunteer! I think you have struck upon a significant issue. With all the push to make procedures outpatient, there is a burden of care shifted to the patient to manage. I know our local chapter of the American Cancer society relies on volunteers to drive patients - the challenge occurs when that patient requires 24 hour observation after the procedure which used to happen when you spent the night at the hospital.

Sorry you have to have the procedure - but your post here has inspired me to reach out and see if I can provide assistance locally to those who need it.

I was at a Doctor's office yesterday and there was a lovely confused woman trying to get into the wrong office (which wasn't open). She had difficulty walking and needed care. So I determined which office she needed to get to and assisted her there. We all need a little help sometimes.

Dx 5/23/2018, IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/4 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 6/27/2018 Mastectomy; Mastectomy (Left); Mastectomy (Right); Reconstruction (Left): Silicone implant; Reconstruction (Right): Silicone implant Hormonal Therapy 7/27/2018 Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone)
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Mar 11, 2022 10:46PM parakeetsrule wrote:

Salamandra, I think you've cut yourself off from two big sources of help! You mentioned not wanting to ask friends with kids and spouses, but there's no reason to avoid them. Someone with a spouse is actually a great idea because that means they have someone at home to hold down the fort while they help you. And someone with kids probably has babysitters available and might enjoy a break from the kids to help out a friend. Living in the same city as siblings or other relatives doesn't mean they'll be able to help when you need it. My siblings all have kids so there's no difference between asking them and asking a friend with kids!

There's no reason a single person's support system should only include other single people. I think that's unrealistic. I'm also single and live alone and if I restricted myself to only asking other single childless people for help, I'd be stuck up a creek too. My married and/or parent friends and relatives are just as happy to help as anyone else. And I'm happy to help them out when they ask.

Don't make assumptions, just ask them!

Stage 2 at 37, Stage 4 at 41. Cancer is dumb. Cookies are good. Dx 3/21/2017, IDC, Left, Grade 2, ER+/PR-, HER2- Chemotherapy 5/15/2017 AC + T (Taxol) Hormonal Therapy 12/8/2021 Faslodex (fulvestrant) Targeted Therapy 12/13/2021 Piqray (alpelisib) Dx IDC, Other, Stage IV, ER+, HER2- Hormonal Therapy Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone) Surgery Lymph node removal (Left); Mastectomy (Left) Radiation Therapy Whole breast: Lymph nodes, Chest wall
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Mar 12, 2022 08:54PM salamandra wrote:

So the procedure was today and my friend came and it was all fine. Best case scenario, it will help with the turning of a friendly acquaintanceship into an actual friendship.

I know you are right about asking friends who are not necessarily single also. It's not just about them not having time (that seems more of a factor with kids), but also on some level... pride and reciprocity maybe? Like they would never ever ever call me for something like this, because they have their person. So I guess it is a combination of feeling like a third wheel and like it's rubbing my face in it. But now that I am thinking about and naming those things maybe I can move past them a bit.

Rah, I love that it inspired you to help. I tried to do some googling for local services but everything I came up with (at least for people my age) was paid, starting at about $80 minimum - and that's without paying for the transportation, so literally just meeting me inside the doctor's office and, I guess, walking me to the subway station.

exbrnxgrl, that's always relevant perspective on aging. I always resent it when my father complains about the pains of age, and especially jokes like 'aging isn't for wimps' or whatever, because I think about my mother's death at 53 - which doesn't seem so far from my current age at the moment. x

Anyway, clearly I am carrying more baggage around all this than I had realized. But at least I got my new IUD and hopefully the biopsy and blood tests all come back clear!

Dx at 39. 1.8cm. Oncotype 9. Dx 9/19/2018, IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 10/18/2018 Lumpectomy; Lymph node removal Hormonal Therapy 11/1/2018 Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone) Radiation Therapy 12/3/2018 Whole breast: Breast Hormonal Therapy 12/19/2019 Fareston (toremifene)
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Mar 13, 2022 06:59AM rah2464 wrote:

Salamandra glad the procedure is completed and you have opened a new friendship. Best of luck on the test results Heart

Dx 5/23/2018, IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/4 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 6/27/2018 Mastectomy; Mastectomy (Left); Mastectomy (Right); Reconstruction (Left): Silicone implant; Reconstruction (Right): Silicone implant Hormonal Therapy 7/27/2018 Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone)
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Mar 13, 2022 02:17PM laughinggull wrote:

Hi Salamandra,

I agree with the poster who said dont discount married people. I am married, and I have asked different friends to accompany me to chemo, and I really enjoyed their support. Also, if a friend asked me to be her escort, I would feel honored, and I know I would do it, unless in extenuating circumstances myself, and my husband would be happy to hold the fort. I also have kids. When my kids were really little and I was traveling for work maybe we wouldnt have been able to do it. But these days, totally, any day.

Asking an acquaintance is also a good idea, and a good way to turn the relationship into something deeper. Someone I used to work with asked me to babysit her kids once when I didnt have kids myself, and we had known each other for like a couple of weeks because I was new, and I happily did it and we became friends after that.

(I really believe in helping each other out)

LaughingGull

ACx4, THPx4, HP (to complete 1y); Nerlynx (1y); AI (expected 10y), Surgery: BMX + ALND, Reconstruction, Oophorectomy. Radiation. Dx 10/26/2017, IDC, Right, 3cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, 2/6 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Mar 13, 2022 04:33PM gonegirl wrote:

I was single my first nasty chemo and other stuff, and frankly I asked anyone to help me. I had no family here and had no partner or kids.

The other things was to join my local aging in place org. They're usually called villages. I asked volunteers from there for help here and there.

Finally, I'm married now but my husband is horrible at advocating for me, just his temperament. I hired a patient navigator to step in as needed. If I'm in dire straits, she'll intercede with doctors and nurses to get me what I need. An expense but I'm dipping into my 401k.

Targeted Therapy 2/10/2012 Herceptin (trastuzumab) Chemotherapy 2/10/2012 Taxol (paclitaxel) Surgery 11/1/2012 Mastectomy (Left): Simple; Mastectomy (Right): Simple; Reconstruction (Left): Silicone implant; Reconstruction (Right): Silicone implant Surgery 11/6/2012 Mastectomy; Mastectomy (Left); Mastectomy (Right); Reconstruction (Left); Reconstruction (Right) Targeted Therapy 12/8/2013 Kadcyla (T-DM1, ado-trastuzumab) Radiation Therapy 11/7/2015 External Local Metastases 11/7/2015 Radiation therapy: Bone Targeted Therapy 9/12/2018 Herceptin (trastuzumab) Targeted Therapy 9/12/2018 Perjeta (pertuzumab) Radiation Therapy 3/24/2022 Other part

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