I have breast cancer and I had to have surgery and go through treatment. First it was hard to hear the words breast cancer all I could think of was that I was going to die. I wanted to live. Then when I told my husband he was upset the way he dealt with it was not good to us. He started drinking and yelling at me and the kids. So we had to tell the kids. We spent a month or more not knowing what to do who to talk to all we could do was wait for the hospital or someone to call us.
When I went into hospital my husband became good again. He realised that if I died he had to be upright to take care of the kids. The treatment and the surgery made me so sick I was in and out of hospital. I couldn’t hug my kids or my husband because of the medicines, no one told me that, no one said that you are going to be filled with so much toxins, or if they did they said it in a way I didn’t understand.
My husband had to take unpaid leave to take care of me, as I didn’t bounce back like people seem to think you do. I was sick sick sick. We had no money, he wasn’t able to get a carers allowance to take care of me and I was only able to get sickness benefits.
We were told that we could get help from cancer council but we asked them for money to help pay the bills and we got nothing. They did offer to let me go to a day for other women to get dollied up but what good is that to me, when I needed money to pay the mortgage, buy foods and the constant cleaning products. We asked canteen to help us at the start of the year to pay the school fees, the kids don’t go to a flash school just the local state school. But it all costs us money. Uniforms book allowances computer allowance. Canteen didn’t help us but did offer to send my daughter to a camp with other kids who suffer cancer or parents have cancer. My daughter felt shame at that. She didn’t want to go. She didn’t care about the counselling she just felt shame at going on a camp with kids who are dying.
No one was there to help us. We reached out to some of the Aboriginal organisations and they were no help. If my kids played up in school we might have got some help but no one wanted to know us or what we have been through
I was convinced to tell my story to help make a change in how things are done