Sunday, May 25, 2008

Silent Killer -- Psychological stress

A female cancer patient in India faces a lot of problems like social, economical and psychological. Wearing a wig after chemo and roaming around surely causes a lot of comments from even educated persons. But Soma, my wife, tackled this issue elegantly. The disease, cancer, itself creates a sense of death all the time in the mind of a patient. We need to be extremely careful so that the patient can involve his/her mind in a creative acts rather than thinking about death.

My Bitter Experience: My family stood firmly behind us during these 6 years. But one of my relatives were little different and proved very much effective in a negative manner. He used to stay near to us. So he was a regular visitor. His approach was very clear and casual. He used to express his concern about huge medical bills because of her treatment. Slowly he made her believe that she was responsible to ruin the family. Because of her sickness, she couldn’t conceive. That was another weak point which he utilized in a very much sophisticated way. Lastly, that relative never forgot to mention that I had to live an unhappy life due to Soma. Neither Soma nor I could immediately realize the impact of his intention because he was so articulate. We didn’t expect that he wanted to kill Soma mentally. Ultimately when we realized it was too late.

The Horrible Psychological Fall Out: During early 2007, the impact of his effort to destroy Soma’s confidence started showing results. I took her to a psychologist. The Dr grilled me like I was a murderer. He revealed that Soma developed suicidal mentality because she considered herself a burden on me. Of course, I also failed to act in a proper way to help her to maintain or build up confidence. She started to refuse to take food, medicine, became impatient and preferred only to sleep after taking sleeping pills. All desires to live vanished. I was witnessing helplessly the transformation of a joyous Soma into a timid creature with no expectation from anyone.

My Role: I was very much supportive. Soma relied on me absolutely. I took all the steps to ensure better treatment. But I failed to read her mind properly. I knew that cancer patients were very much touchy. I tried to tell her about success of Pranayam and stories of cancer survivors. But those were like general vocal tonic. I couldn’t help her according to her mental condition and I paid a heavy price for that mistake. I hope my experience will help others to find proper ways.

A Real Lesson: SOMA CANCER PATIENTS CARE SOCIETY is well concerned about the fact that family members’ activities often create a situation when patients start blaming him/herself. Here we are trying to aware the family members of the cancer patients to be always alert and actively try to boost the patient mentally whenever and however possible. To be careful to expose the patients to other persons, remembering my experience and not relying on anybody blindly.

Suggestion not to overlook: We recommend purchasing a CD of Gayatri Mantra and playing it in the morning which is very much helpful to ward off stress. It is not advisable to view sex and violence filled movies or complicated family dramas. We also suggest letting them read light jokes and show Tom and Jerry type cartoon pictures. We suggest keeping a cancer patient free from all sorts of tension and chaos. Create happy and joyful environment and keep them busy with something they prefer. Encourage, encourage and encourage…………………….them !!!!

A host of websites are available at your finger tips suggesting methods by experts about how to boost up a cancer patient. Check those sites, and find out the best suitable way for a particular patient.

An Appeal: SOMA CANCER PATIENTS CARE SOCIETY is running shortage of fund. As a result our effort is limited to small numbers of patients only. Our capacity is too much limited. So it’ll be really appreciable, if the reader finds some time to try to boost up the confidence of any cancer patient and make his/her life little better.

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It is effective to show a cancer patient beautiful paintings like a glorious landscape, a bunch of red roses, a morning sun, a smiling child, a toy train on the backdrop of green and gracious mountain, a running cheeta, a peacock, a tree full of fruits, a farmer sowing seeds etc.