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Life to be LivedChallenges and choices for patients and carers in life-threatening illnesses$
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Catherine Proot and Michael Yorke

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199685011

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199685011.001.0001

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Trials and adjustment

Trials and adjustment

(p.16) Chapter 3 Trials and adjustment
Life to be Lived

Catherine Proot

Michael Yorke

Oxford University Press

This chapter describes the behaviour and feelings associated with the adjustment to living with life-altering illness. Illness disrupts the routines in people’s lives. When they start treatment, patients enter a world governed by medical appointments and many new faces. Then suddenly, that support is withdrawn. They long to go home but fail sometimes to recognise the problems and challenges involved. The stress and strain this can put on family ties and relationships is highlighted. Anxiety can take many guises and may be compounded by anger, a sense of powerlessness, loss of dignity and alienation. Self-doubt is common. Patients long for what they feel to be normality. Ways of giving a sense of safety are explored.

Keywords:   cancer journey, attachment, life-altering illness, anxiety, anger, powerlessness, loss of dignity, longing for normality, family stress

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