Finally Opening Up...

Hey everyone, this is my first post, finally got the courage to speak up and say how I feel. So last November, I lost my mum to COPD, she was in hospital for just over a week and I was shocked at how quickly she declined and went down hill - COPD was a complication of 1/2 of her left lung being removed from Cancer. On top of this I lost my little jack Russell in January, which was the only thing keeping me stable to be honest. I’m 26 and live with my dad who was married to my mum for 35 years, he’s your typical old school cockney, never opens up and doesn’t express his feelings, yet it’s obvious he has feelings of anger and bitterness, and I get the brunt of it. My safe place is work, where I work with a lot of ladies who are supportive. My mum was my back bone and so emotionally supportive, and now I feel like I have nowhere to turn, my house doesn’t feel like a home anymore it feels empty. I’ve tried to be strong for me and my dad but it’s making me ill physically, getting stressed and taking it out on my boyfriend, I think I’ve shunned away from it all try to be tough on the outside, but really I’m breaking on the inside. Any advice would be greatly appreciated on how to cope, as I don’t feel that I am currently.

Hi, so sorry for the loss of your mum i also lost my mum to copd.I completely understand about trying to seem tough and like your coping as this is how i’m feeling right now, my heart us breaking but i put the mask on everyday and just get on with thing’s, finding it really hard to talk to anyone and that’s why i ended up on this site as i felt i needed some sort of outlet, hoping you find a way to cope better and hoping with this site and people in the same situation as me will help, big hug’s x

Hey Jan, thank you so much for your reply, it means a lot. I’m so sorry to hear about your mum, I feel like there isn’t enough awareness about COPD and the effects it has on the body. She went into hospital with what I thought was a simple chest infection, but I reckon she had been trying a long time to hide it. I’m in Essex so if you live close, send me a message on inbox - if you ever feel like meeting up for a coffee let me know.

I’m so sorry for your loss, I recently lost my dad to cancer, and joined here to ask for help. I don’t know a lot about COPD, but my 46 year old sister was diagnosed with it 3 years ago, your so right! I didn’t realise how serious COPD is as my sister obviously plays it down. I think you are right, there is not enough awareness. I’m going to find out all I can now. So thank you for opening my eyes to it.

Hi Ben, I’m so sorry to hear about your loss, and I agree with you I never truly knew the effects it had on my mum, and the breathless she always had… in a way I feel guilty that I was blind to it. My mum passed away as a result of the cancer 6 years previously, having 1/2 of her left lung removed and her heart overcompensating for it, and in the end giving up. It’s nice that we have this forum online to share this

Thank you for your condolences, I don’t think you were blind to it, My sister gets breathless easily and uses an inhaler a lot and frequently has courses of steroids, that she DEFINITELY plays down. I’ve been thinking since I read your post, the times she’s coughed and wheezed but she would say “oh its only this… or that” and I’d just assume she was telling the truth. She’s a parent to a 7 year old boy (that I adore) that has so many issues, inc… ADHD, just on the autism spectrum, epilepsy, and so on, and works full time in a chip shop, so I just think if she dismisses it, it cant be serious. You’ve opened my eyes to this and I’m so grateful for it. I visit her and my nephew every week and speak on the phone every couple of days. So I will be a lot more vigilant. X

My mum was EXACTLY the same - played it down, kept it together for so long. It’s only since her passing that I’ve truly realised how much struggle she had in her life - she put on a front and was the heart of our family home. I would advise that you sit down with your sister and have a chat with her on a serious level, in a gentle manner of saying that she needs to start thinking about herself a little more, perhaps getting some more information from doctors? X