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Daughter in hospital second time for dehydration and not eating. Need all the advice I can get. She has been staying alone, husband has to work. I work also. What is needed to get her to eat, having thrush, and metilic taste in mouth. Antibodics she is still taking for the cough that was apparently infection from lung. That is for the next 2 weeks. I don't know what I am talking about, but I am trying. Lost a lot of weight. Husband trying so hard to do all this himself. So we have stayed away for their privacy . I think it is time for me to start doing something. We are only a few miles away.

All your suggestions would really be appreicated.

God Bless to all

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Dear Mom, :wink:

Metallic taste and thrush...I had the metallic taste during radiation and sucked on Altoid's Tangerine Sours candy. The BEST thing going down (when NOT doing radiation and have an inflamed esophagus) was shakes. In the hospital, they made one with orange sherbet and milk that tasted like a Creamsicle...you can add other "things" to the shake to inject a zillion calories - I think Ry recommends Carnation breakfast drink? OR add Ensure, Boost, etc.

It's time for Mom to step up, it's too much for them to handle alone. Find an "excuse" to check on her and take her a shake - maybe take her a blender if she doesn't have one?

If her husband has to work and she's sitting at home, alone, Cheryl's (Cheryl and Jack's Cheryl) basement monster is probably coming up to pick on her. She could probably use some company to keep the monsters at bay... Talk to her, tell stories of her childhood and yours, plan little "crafts" to do (nothing needing a whole lotta thought & concentration on her part) - maybe get into scrapbooking and work on the family photo collection together, giving the story of the pictured event?

It's time to step in, looking is over...

Take care,


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I was one of two caregivers for my Dad and although it was hard to give up some of the responsibility when someone would ask to help, I did let others help and it was a good thing. For my Mom and I and for my Dad. So, I can understand why your Son-in-law may be resisting some help, but I do agree with you....it's probably time you step in and take on what you can. It might be something as easy as doing the shopping or dropping off a few meals a week. Another idea would be to designate one evening, the same night every week, that you stay with your daughter. It gives her something to look forward to, you'll feel that you are contributing and the husband can get out for a bit and do something just for him.....or maybe he'll choose to stay at the house and do something around there but you'll be there so he can relax a little. Just some suggestions. It's a rough time for everyone involved.....I understand that. Good luck to you and keep us posted.


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Sorry we had to meet this way, but glad you found us. I am wondering a few things. What was your relationship like before your daughter got ill? There may be underlying reasons they aren't asking or accepting your help. Maybe there are issues that need to be discussed. Also, maybe your daughter feels guilty about her cancer. Maybe she blames herself and thus needs to be assured that you love her. I don't know, but I do know that we tend to beat ourselves up over this monster. I am one of those, so I know. I don't have any family who lives near, but I don't really want any of them to come either. Mostly because I don't want to burden anyone. So maybe she is worried about that. I just know that there must be some reason for them to be doing this alone and if you really want to help, then maybe you need to find out what the real reason is. Just a thought. I would just make sure she knows how much you love her.

You don't say her age or yours. Does she have children?

Best wishes to you. I know you love your daughter dearly.


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I agree - it's time for you to step in. And although I'm sure her husband is doing a great job of taking care of her, there's just nothing like having "Mama" to make you feel better. I can still remember that whenever one of us didn't feel well, Mama would "fix us a place on the sofa" (which meant a comfortable pillow and blanket - and keeping everyone else OFF of the sofa) and getting us a cold wet rag. It STILL makes me feel better.

As far as the thrush is concerned . . . this is probably gonna sound really odd, but when I was nursing my first child, she and I both got thrush MANY times (in part due to the fact that the only way I could get her to stop crying was to stick my nipple in her mouth! :lol: ), we found out pretty quick that I was allergic to the medicine (a cream called Nistatin) the doctor gave me. Caused an absolutely terrible rash and the worst itching imaginable. Anyway, the next line of defense was Gentian Violet, that purple medicine they use on horse hooves. We were told to put it on a cotton swab and coat the inside of the baby's mouth with it. This seemed to do the trick quite quickly (although I won't tell you what it made my boobs look like)! :lol:

Anyway, this is a remedy for thrush that no other nursing mother I know of ever was told to try, so you might want to at least run it by the doctor. Hope this helps!



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Yep, it's time. In comes the mom calvary. Your daughter is getting IV's in the hospital (I'm sure) so she will get hydrated but she needs to keep it up when she gets home. She has to drink. Dehydration is dangerous, she's got to have fluids.

You should be able to find a powder called Weight Gainer 2200 (I think that's the #) at a GNC or health store. It can be mixed w/ shakes or whatever and will help her put weight on. She can also use Ensure or Instant Breakfast which tastes better than the Ensure.

Now, there are things to be done, laundry, dinners, etc. Her husband can't do it all. Been there, done that. I was the same way, couldn't ask for help. My mom did not ask what we needed, she just started bringing dinner once a week (a help) and she did our laundry when she watched the kids. Believe me, he will be very happy to have some help.

Also, you may want to consider the Family Medical Leave Act to take some time off work to care for her. I wish you all the best. Let us know how she's doing.


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You brought up some really good points... At first, I didn't really want my mother to "help", either. BUT, I watched my husband try to do it ALL, the shared responsibilities that we had with kids, laundry, housework, WORK, AND all that had been added on - keeping track of meds, food, visitors, PAIN...add to that not sleeping... Well, the guy was just BEAT!

The whole undertaking was far more than we ever thought it would be... Make no mistake, were we given no other options, we would have made it work, but there WAS the luxury of a mom who needed to do SOMETHING to help out her little girl and we asked her to come. My father worked in the "city" we lived in so he brought Mom down in the morning and took her home in the afternoon. She has had standing plans on Wednesday for a very long time so occassionally, my son stayed home to take care of Mom (he needed to "belong" as well - my husband worked about a mile from our home and my boy was 11 at the time and had a detailed list of what was going on should he have to call 911 - and he KNEW that was the first call, calling Mark was secondary)...

Offer the help, talk to your daughter and son-in-law separately and get a "feel"...and then talk to them together. It's a bite to the pride to know that maybe you DO need help, but they should be able to get over that...

Take care,


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After my surgery, I went to my mom's house for a MONTH to have her "take care of me" and help out with my son. When I went home, I started radiation and chemo and my fiance pretty much moved in with me and my son and helped out with everthing. Drove him to school, made all the meals, did the laundry, and my mom felt VERY pushed aside. I must admit, at that point, I didn't want my mother's help and was sort of pushing her away. I resented when she would stop by and try to take my son to breakfast and drop him off at school, I thought she was insinuating that we couldn't handle things ourselves. Of course.....that was the fatigued, drugged up me thinking those things, and in a moment of clarity, I realized that she not only WANTED to help, but NEEDED to help. I was her "baby" and I was suffering and she needed to make things better for me.

Your son-in-law may be trying to do things on his own to show that he is a good provider and can take care of his wife. And your daughter may be feeling like just pushing everyone away right now. But I am sure if you gently tell her that you are coming over to spend some time with her, she will not object and she will certainly not object to you showing up with some warm soup or green tea to sip on.

I was alone during the day too (everyone at work) and being alone during treatment is a scary place to be. Too much time to think, especially when your head is fuzzy from dehyrdration. My mom started to come by on her lunch hour every day just to keep me company and make sure I was eating/drinking something.

My dad (who is usually a very quiet guy) also used to stop by on his way home from work and just "pop in" to surprise me and a few times balloon deliveries came to my door as a mid-day pick-me-up from my parents. My mom also sent me goofy cards every week in the mail to keep my spirits up.

I was feeling miserable and didn't really want to see anyone, but all of those silly cards and balloons from mom and special surprise visits from my dad did wonders for my disposition. They may not be asking for help, but there is no harm in giving it anyway!!! I wish your daughter the best of luck as she continues her treatment.

ps -- in my situation, the easiest thing to go down was WARM (not hot) green tea or warm Cambell's Chicken & Stars soup with mushed up crackers in it. I also drank a lot of Boost shakes during those few weeks when nothing else would go down.

Take care,


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Thanks to all . Each of you have a very good idea. Our daughter has always been independent. I now understand their reasoning, they want to do it themselves. They have, but now it is time for me to help as much as I can. I feel so much better knowing that other daughters felt the same way about being helped. We Mothers have a need to do something. Boy, all of you are wonderful. She is 45 and I am 68, her father is 72. They have no children. She has always had a high profile job. Worked 24-7. This has got to be a shock to her and her husband.

God bless

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Dear outside,

Maybe a part of it is simple as not having stuff in the house to drink, esp if hubby's doing the shopping.

As for the mouth sores, I can offer this, it helped me a LOT!@!!

From my oncologist:

I hope this helps. It helped me an AWFUL lot, because also on and off I had thrush, which made for really bad mouth sores.

My oncologist prescribed this for me when I had difficulty eating post

chemo and radiation:

Directions: swish and spit about 1 spoonful (fifteen mls) every 30 minutes as needed, esp before

eating. (you can swallow a little bit or a little more...)

Mouth rinse: (pharmacist has to make it up)

25 cc of liquid Benadryl, 25 mg/cc stock solution

25 cc of Maalox

25 cc of lidocaine, viscous, 2% solution

25 cc of nystatin liquid. (stock solution)


There is also a premix similar to the above available in the Wash DC

area by prescription called Gel-claire, but the nurse had no firsthand

knowledge of it.

Hope this helps!

It's hard when things taste bad, I found I could tolerate bottled water room temperature pretty well as my favorite. Also was able to measure how much I was getting.

The "mouthwash " did wonders for being able to eat with those nasty sores.....

Good luck to your daughter. Comes a time you have to admit you can't do it alone....


Prayers always


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Dear Outside,

I can't add anymore to what has been said except to say that your daugther is lucky to have a mom who is so concerned like you are. Remember, as others said, if she pu shes you away, it is most likely the drugs talking. As my mom told me, "who else can annoy you but me?". And it is true, moms have a special magic to them.

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When cancer hits, it is a whole new ball game. No more business as usual. Your daughter needs someone to insist she eat and drink plenty of liquids. She will not do this on her own, and her husband has his hands full. It is time for someone to take charge of her eating and drinking. I became the food Nazi and did not give my wife the option of not eating or drinking, regardless of metallic mouth, thrush, nausea, etc. I would give her choices, but she had to pick one. And I stayed with her until she consumed something. Instead of three meals a day, we went to some small snack every two hours -- this also keeps the nausea down. It is a hard job to be the bad guy but so necessary for her fight and her improvement. It is too easy to get dehydrated and weak and lose important weight. Do whatever is necessary to get your daughter on the right track, or you will lose her very fast. Don

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For us it was the opposite. My Husband was very ill. I did not realize it but I was over whelmed.

Our Daughter just moved in with us. She did a much better job of the forceing food and drink. He was on so many meds. Before meals, after meals, 3 times a day, 2 times a day, 4 times a day, some to be taken only 1 hour after the other etc. She sat up one nite and made a schedule. Med at 7, eat at 8, Meds at 9, eat at 10, etc. It saved my sanity. I looked at all the meds and the instructions and did not know what to do first.

She put big signs all over the kitchen. Eat, drink, meds etc. It sure made things easier.

She drove us to all appointments. Radiation every day. etc.

She would just put a load of clothes in. Run errands, shop for groceries, etc.

I am the Mother and it was not easy to let my daughter take over like that but I don't think we could have done with out her.

So just show up with supper one nite. Put a load of clothes in the washer. Make a grocery list. Go to the library and get some books on tape. I think the scrap book idea is great. Just listen when she feels like talking. Allowing your son in law some time by himself.

It was certainly hard on our daughter too. She and her husband live in Canada. She took time off from her job. My wonderful son in law would not have it any other way.

Be sure and eat your wheaties, It is going to be a hard job. But you are the Mother and you can do it. Mothers can do everything.

It has been a very hard 18 months, but he is doing really great now.


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I am a Sister to a Brother who just passed away to lc. Most of my family lives in NC and I live in NH. My Brother lived in Maine. I heard he had cancer in mid January. I was devastated. I guess the reason I told you where we were all from was so you would know that I was not only a Sister but also a surrogate Mother and friend to my Brother. After his dx I called him a lot but did not go to Maine right away. He lived 3 hours from me but that has nothing to do with it. I needed him to want me to come and I was not sure he did just then. I held off and felt so unapart of it all even though I phoned him every day.

One day I was talking to my Sister in NC and she said (because I was crying all the time) that she thought I felt some guilt in not being a part of what was happening with Alan. She said I needed to get on an antidepressent and I also needed to call him and make plans to go and see him and to do it on a regualr basis so that I would feel like I was in his life and in his fight.

After talking to her I called my Brother (9:25PM) and I said "Alan, I love You, and I miss You and I want to come see you". He said "well, when are you coming?" I said "tommorow" He said " How about right now?" Tears rolled down my face and I said "Al, It's 9:25 at night!" and he said "well then that gives you 35 mins to pack and you can leave by 10PM and be here by 1:00AM" I said " I am on my way!!!"

I went in to the computer room and said to my husband "I am leaving to go to Maine and see Al" He was shocked I was leaving so late and traveling so far at night alone and asked me to wait till the morning and I said " You know how much I need to go and he asked me to come tonight and I will be just fine" My hubby said "C'mon, I'll help you pack!!"

I know that was kind of long and he said she said but it was to make a point. I was waiting for him to ask me to come and he was waiting for me to say I wanted to come. Don't wait to join in and help your daughter. There are many thoughts behind silent wishes.

Everyone needs their Mom no matter what their age and especially when they are ill.

PLease keep us posted and I am sure your daughter and your son in law will appreciate your being a part of all this. It will also be something you never have to look back on and regret that you didnt do.

God Bless you all,


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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi Outside,

I was advised to try Zinc lozenges for thrush, it really helped my husband. Also, he found drinking Sprite before eating helps with the "taste" problem.

You are going through a very hard time right now, and to be kept from helping with your daughter must be heartbreaking. I would visit the hospital and be with her as much as possible, but don't forget to leave her alone with her husband whenever you can too. If he says anything, why don't you tell him exactly how you feel. Perhaps he needs to know !


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