Our support services are freely available at any point and for as long they are needed, following a brain tumour diagnosis. For loved ones this, sadly, can be a particular need when faced with bereavement. Here is Nicole’s story:
My husband and I have attended our local Brain Tumour Support Group since Keith was diagnosed with his inoperable metastatic brain tumour. He died in the summer and I have continued to attend as I find the support incredible.
We both really valued being part of a group where we felt completely normal. People around you are also deeply affected, and in their love for you they can begin to regard and treat you differently; you can sometimes feel you have now almost become your diagnosis.
But our Brain Tumour Support Group wasn’t like that. We could talk openly without sympathy as we didn’t want sympathy. We just wanted to be treated the same as we were before the diagnosis.
Keith’s primary cancer was oesophageal and the support group we attended there was also good, but they don’t offer any support to the bereaved. That’s why I value this group so much.
A cancer diagnosis, regardless of stage or type, changes you for life, whether you are the patient or carer, and it’s something you need to experience to fully understand.
I feel an affinity and deep sense of connection with the members of the group that hasn’t just vanished because my husband has died.
The group is a safe space where we can all be ourselves and not our diagnoses. It’s somewhere we can adjust to our new ‘normal’ by drawing on the experiences and support of each other.