© JANSSENBIOTECH, INC. 2018

Caregiver Q+A: Do Support Groups Work?

  • WHEN DID YOUR PARTNER FIND OUT HE HAD PROSTATE CANCER?
    My husband, Chris, was diagnosed in 2014 with prostate cancer. He was 58 years old.
  • WHAT WAS YOUR INTRODUCTION TO CAREGIVING LIKE?
    I felt completely overwhelmed with all the information.
    I desperately needed help and support. 
  • WHERE DID YOU GO FOR SUPPORT?
    Through a friend at church, I found out about Prostate Health Education Network, also known as PHEN. My husband and I started going to PHEN meetings together. 
  • HOW DO THE MEETINGS WORK?
    The support-group meetings were 2-part. In the first hour, all the men with prostate cancer and their caregivers would hear information together. Then, 2 groups would break out, one for the men and one for the caregivers, so each group could chat.
  • DID YOU SEE A POSITIVE DIFFERENCE AFTER MEETINGS?
    Oh, yes. A tremendous weight was lifted off my husband, Chris's, shoulders immediately after talking with the other men. It was also easier, after the meetings, for him to open up to me about what was really going on with him, how he was feeling.
  • WHAT DID YOU GET FROM THE MEETINGS?
    Connecting with other caregivers was so helpful. I could share my frustrations with them, and they understood how so many people, who weren't doctors but had somehow been impacted by prostate cancer, were offering us all sorts of treatment options, even "homemade" remedies. That was frustrating, and I could talk about it—the other caregivers got it. 
  • DO YOU STILL GO TO GROUPS?
    I actually volunteer now, helping to organize PHEN events. I was just so happy with how they helped us. And my husband, Chris, still goes to the support groups...more often than I do! I think he just really enjoys being with the men.
  • HOW CAN I FIND A LOCAL PHEN MEETING?
    It's easy! Just go online to ProstateHealthEd.org, and click on the city closest to you in the box at the top right to find a local group.

 

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