Navigation Links
UT Southwestern support group's book reaches out to husbands, partners of women battling cancer

DALLAS July 28, 2011 When a loved one has cancer, it affects the entire family. For men, many of whom are less likely to take advantage of a support group, this can leave a void with devastating emotional consequences.

A UT Southwestern Medical Center men's support group is intent on filling that gap through its recently published book, Stages, which shares stories of members whose wives battled cancer.

"It's very difficult to put on paper. I just kept telling myself the benefit this will give others outweighs that," said Mark Mester, who tells his story in one chapter, along with chapters by co-authors Art Bourgeault, Bob Graham, Ralph Long and Scott Baker.

Open to any man whose wife or partner has cancer, the group meets twice a month at UT Southwestern's Harold C. Simmons Comprehensive Cancer Center. The purpose is to provide education and support, said Jack Hamilton, group facilitator.

"There's a wealth of knowledge of men in the group who have been traveling this journey for a while," Mr. Hamilton said. "It really is the model of what a support group looks like."

Five longtime group members decided to write the book as a resource for male caregivers and also to spread word about the group. Free copies are handed out to cancer center patients or family members. A gift from the Alan and Nancy Baer Foundation funded publication of 2,500 copies.

In the foreword, Dr. James K.V. Willson, director of the Simmons Cancer Center, notes that for every one of the 6 million women now battling cancer in the U.S., there are just as many or more family members affected.

"They are helping ill loved ones get through the practical challenges of day-to-day life as well as cope with the emotional hurdles of living, and sometimes dying, with cancer," wrote Dr. Willson. "In this book, you'll find the stories of five men who know firsthand what it's like to love and care for a cancer patient."

Each of the stories is different in its advice, experience and outcome. Three wives did not survive their cancers, while the other two patients are either in treatment or remission.

"There's a common thread in all of the stories, yet each person brought a different perspective to what happened to him," said Mr. Baker, whose wife, Victoria, is doing well three years after a stem-cell transplant for leukemia treatment.

For Mr. Graham, who lost his first wife to brain cancer in 1989, going through the demanding process again without support would have been too much to handle. When his second wife was diagnosed with leukemia, went through treatment and later died of an infection, the group's involvement provided empathy and shared experiences.

"These guys are incredible," said Mr. Graham. "For people going through what we've gone through, if they don't find a support group, they're fighting a losing battle."

Visiting that first group meeting was not easy for the authors, all of whom said their wives prodded them into attending. The men were glad they did, emphasizing that the group is not for therapy, but rather genuine support.

"If I reach out to these guys, they will follow through, and I find that a huge source of security and comfort you can't get anywhere else," said Mr. Long, whose wife, Linda, is now undergoing chemotherapy at the Simmons Cancer Center for metastatic breast cancer.


Contact: Debbie Bolles
UT Southwestern Medical Center

Related medicine news :

1. Urine protein test might help diagnose kidney damage from lupus, UT Southwestern researchers find
2. UT Southwestern researchers uncover Fragile X syndrome genes role in shaping brain
3. UT Southwestern participates in nationwide study offering free lung tumor genetic testing
4. Belly fat or hip fat -- it really is all in your genes, says UT Southwestern researcher
5. Novel anti-malarial drug candidate found by UT Southwestern researchers
6. Those with allergic asthma face double trouble during flu season, UT Southwestern findings suggest
7. UT Southwestern investigators perform head-to-head comparison of incontinence treatments
8. UT Southwestern unveils next generation CT scanner that views whole organs in a heartbeat
9. Simple eye test measures damage from multiple sclerosis, UT Southwestern researchers find
10. Interferon might help asthma patients breathe easier, UT Southwestern study suggests
11. UT Southwesterns cancer center earns National Cancer Institute designation
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... November 27, 2015 , ... According to an article ... way that they are handling security in light of the recent terrorist attacks in ... an attempt to stop an attack from reaching U.S. soil. Especially around special events ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... November 27, 2015 , ... "When I was ... inventor from Hillside, N.J. "Many people catch diseases simply from sitting on such ... always be protected from germs." , He developed the patent-pending QUDRATECS to eliminate ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... ... the No.1 Herpes-only dating community in the world, revealed that over 50% of its members ... billion people under the age of 50 – or 67% of the population - are ... of HSV-1 infection . , "The data shocks us highly!" said Michelle Li, Co-Founder ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... 27, 2015 , ... The moment you stop improving is ... fulfilling the needs of advisers and clients but going above and beyond to ... customer service. However, there's always room for improvement, which is why the entire ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... (PRWEB) , ... November 27, 2015 , ... Dr. ... Medical Associates, Inc. and Dr. Tucker Bierbaum with Emergency Medicine at St., ... observed that both STEMI and Sepsis conditions present in similar ways and require time-critical ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/26/2015)... , 26 november 2015 AAIPharma ... de geplande investering aan van ten minste ... laboratoria en het mondiale hoofdkantoor in ... zal resulteren in extra kantoorruimte en extra ... de groeiende behoeften van de farmaceutische en ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... FRANCISCO , November 26, 2015 ... billion by 2022, according to a new report by Grand ... Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) which demands kidney transplantation is expected ... and cost effective substitute for organ transplantation. --> ... billion by 2022, according to a new report by Grand ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... November 26, 2015 ... universitetssjukhus ser potential att använda SyMRI för ... för patienter med multipel skleros (MS) ... med SyntheticMR AB för att kunna använda ... sjukhuset. Med SyMRI kan man generera flera ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: