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My Therapist is dying
January 26, 2005
12:55 pm
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Anonymous
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I know I've written some about this. My therapist is dying. He was recently diagnosed with inoperable, terminal lung cancer. I saw him yesterday for the first time after about a month and he looks terrible! It is hard for me with my background as I want to "therapize" him!!!

No one really ever tells you how to cope with something like this. I don't even think they cover it in the curriculum when getting a counseling masters. It wasn't something I ever heard about, but I'm not finished with my degree yet, either.

He is hoping to live another 5 years yet I can tell that without a miracle he won't make it that long. He has a young child that he wants to see move into his teen years before he dies.

Has anyone ever had to deal with something like this before?

Also, please send your love and healing energy his way. He needs pain relief--no matter how much time he has left in this place!!!

Love to all,

Ren'ai

January 26, 2005
1:03 pm
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Anonymous
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Ren'ai,

I had been going to the same therapist for quite a while. when she was diagnosed with throat cancer, she had to move back east. (I am in california and she moved to boston, MA). fortunately she survived,but she decided to stay on the east coast to be near her family.

I am so sorry to hear about the situation that your therapist is in. It must be difficult for you to see someone you have been able to lean on for emotional support deteriorating as he is. how are you doing?

January 26, 2005
3:29 pm
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Anonymous
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I am hanging in there. Feeling more concerned for him than me, I guess. He has been a good therapist. I've been seeing him for over a year. Though I know he hopes to live longer, I can tell he isn't going to. It's sad, but what will be will be.

I went ahead and scheduled two more appointments with him, but I have a feeling I won't be seeing him more than a couple more times before he has to stop working.

Thanks for your response. It means a lot to me!!!

Love,

Ren'ai

January 26, 2005
3:40 pm
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mamacinnamon
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Ren'ai,

I'm so sorry about your therapist. That has to be hard. Has he referred his patients on to someone else?

I'm glad you have a couple more appts w/ the therapist. It's important the therapist know you are ok w/ things. Will give you a sense of closure also.

Again, I'm sorry for your pain.

January 26, 2005
4:21 pm
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Anonymous
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He is beginning the process of referring his patients out. He and I had a chance to talk about it yesterday.

I said that I know the time is coming when he will not be there for me anymore and I'm prepared to deal with that appropriately when the time comes. I said that I wanted to go ahead and schedule appointments with him for as long as he feels he is able to work.

In our next session, what I hope to do is tell him that I feel so blessed to have been a part of his journey towards transition. He and I both know this is coming. When I've seen him since he was diagnosed I always ask first about how he is feeling and we discuss that for a little while. It makes us both feel better. In fact, before he was diagnosed I was the one who was telling him what to do about this persistent cough he was having. I could tell he had cancer, but didn't want to say that to him. I guess because I was so tenacious about him getting help, he feels comfortable discussing his condition with me.

He is truly a wonderful man who whole-heartedly believes in miracles. He has helped so many people that I've seen just in the short time I have been a client of his.

Thank you for your response. I guess I didn't realize how much I feel the need to discuss this until I started seeing that people were actually writing back to me on this thread. It feels good to be able to process some of the grief safely.

Love,

Ren'ai

January 26, 2005
7:31 pm
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Anonymous
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I am glad that you are able to speak with your therapist about his condition. I can imagine that you are one of the patients he looks forward to speaking with. It seems that you two work well together. When the time comes, I hope that you will be able to find another therapist who you are able to open up to. Again, I am sorry to hear about the whole situation...

January 27, 2005
9:09 pm
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brendalee
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For what it's worth, my ex father-in-law had lung cancer and they were able to remove one of his lungs. I guess it depends on which one it is from what I remember. But, he had the operation and some chemo and did alright. He later died of a heart attack which just came out of the blue. Anyway, hope this information is helpful. Brenda

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