Handling wife while FIL is dying of cancer

July 10, 2018
15 upvotes

First Post, been following and quietly improving myself for about 6 months.

Background: 39, 6', 245, 22% BF. Lifts are currently pathetic as I recover from a knee and shoulder surgery in the past 5 months, but I'm following SL slowly and surely so I don't reinjure anything. Married 7yrs to wife (also 39), 2 kids 5yrs and 2yrs. Read NMMNG, Pook, halfway through WISNIFG.

Things in my marriage have improved exponentially just from me starting to own my shit and stfu. Now a wrench has seemingly been thrown in that. My FIL (a natural alpha and great mentor of sorts for me since I embraced it) recently got the diagnosis no one wants to hear. A very late stage cancer that has metastasized to his liver and lungs. Waiting on pathology later this week to see if he has weeks or months left, but the early indications are not good. I've so far done a pretty solid job maintaining frame and taking a lot of her normal load off her shoulders so she can spend as much time with her father as possible.

My wife idolizes her father and is obviously taking this very hard. Besides the obvious upping the comfort during this time, any suggestions on how to handle this whole situation and her going forward? Has anyone been through this? I lost my own father to cancer at a very young age, so I don't have an adult frame of reference in these situations.

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Post Information
Title Handling wife while FIL is dying of cancer
Author RP_Prop
Upvotes 15
Comments 12
Date July 10, 2018 1:51 PM UTC (2 years ago)
Subreddit /r/askMRP
Archive Link https://theredarchive.com/r/askMRP/handling-wife-while-fil-is-dying-of-cancer.204230
https://theredarchive.com/post/204230
Original Link https://old.reddit.com/r/askMRP/comments/8xpaw7/handling_wife_while_fil_is_dying_of_cancer/
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Comments

[–]RedPillCoach19 points20 points  (5 children) | Copy Link

suggestions on how to handle this whole situation and her going forward

Provide sympathy and comfort while remaining the oak tree. Listen attentively and sympathetically. Talking to her back and forth and getting sucked into her maelstrom is the worst thing you can do. This is not the time for STFU but it is the time for a strong, stoic, and QUIET presence. for the most part.

Now is the time to take control over your wife. If she cries, hug her. If she needs to be alone, pat her on the shoulder and leave. If she wants to babble on, listen attentively. If she wants to yell (about something other than complaining about you) let her. When she needs leadership and is trying to find a way out of the grief, gently lead her to a better place while always acknowledging the loss.

You will probably never be given the satisfaction of your wife telling you how much she appreciates what you did for her during her time of greatest need but she will remember.

Also, don't be a clown, but don't forget your sense of humor. A light smile or a tight joke at the right time can do amazing things.

[–]PBL894 points5 points  (1 child) | Copy Link

This is pretty much 10/10 advice

[–]nothestrawberrypatch2 points3 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

I second this. We recently lost our dog, she was crying over and over again how it was her fault and it wasn’t of course. I ended up getting frustrated and changed my tone of voice some and that was it. That’s all she will remember now during that time she just needed me to listen.

[–]drty_pr3 points4 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

Now is the time to take control over your wife. If she cries, hug her. If she needs to be alone, pat her on the shoulder and leave. If she wants to babble on, listen attentively. If she wants to yell (about something other than complaining about you) let her. When she needs leadership and is trying to find a way out of the grief, gently lead her to a better place while always acknowledging the loss.

She needs a rock.

[–]RP_Prop[S] 0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy Link

You will probably never be given the satisfaction of your wife telling you how much she appreciates what you did for her during her time of greatest need but she will remember.

Spot on, especially for my wife, who isn't the type to dole out compliments for anything. Thanks for the great input.

[–][deleted] 6 points7 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

My wife's grandmother died on Christmas day last year and her health was in a downward spiral for some time before she passed. While my wife wasn't as close to her grandmother as I'm sure your wife is to her father, the course of action for you is no different. Provide comfort, be patient, be a good a listener, don't say anything dumb. Since your father passed of cancer, you should be able to relate to what your wife is going through and have an easy lay-up for giving your wife some feelz. Tell her about your experience, how it made you feel, your favorite memory of your father, let her know you are there for her, all that shit.

There isn't much you can do besides be strong and supportive and get shit done as per usual. Your mission and goals should not be altered.

[–]ice_walker3 points4 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

This applies: https://www.dailyshoring.com/circle-of-grief-ring-theory/

Your wife and your MIL are in the center of the circle, you are one notch further out.

Good luck.

[–]RuleZeroDAD0 points1 point  (1 child) | Copy Link

Coach gave the answer for what to do while waiting for the inevitable.

I hope this helps when the time comes.

[–]RP_Prop[S] 0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy Link

Thanks RZD, that thread you linked is just the kind of thought process I was looking for. Especially the adding humor when applicable part, that is right up my alley.

[–]CalvinRichland0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy Link

STFU and hold her tight

[–]amalgamator0 points1 point  (1 child) | Copy Link

At 6’ 245 you are obese and probably 30-35% fat. Just being real with you. You probably should shoot to get to at least 185lbs which is a normal BMI. If you can’t lift much, that’s fine but you really need to set a caloric goal and stick to it. It’s probably going to take 1-2 yrs to trim the fat.

[–]RP_Prop[S] 1 point2 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

I had a feeling this might come up, given it's my first post.

I'm not the typical lazy slob that's never exercised before. Prior to the knee and shoulder surgeries I was around 230 and legitimately in the 16-18% BF range so 22% (Navy calc) might in actuality be 24%, but it's definitely not in the 30's range. I'm a former professional athlete (you can probably guess the sport based on my username if you are familiar with it, but that's all I'm going to offer to avoid doxing) and have stayed extremely active in the weight room up until these surgeries brought me to a screeching halt, where I've let myself go a bit recently and gained 10-15lbs. Prior to injury, my 1RM's were: Sq 545, DL 620, Bench 385, Clean 305.

I'm jumping back into the weight room extremely slowly because I have a not insignificant amount of arthritis in my left knee and right shoulder now from the years of abuse. My current lifts with SL5x5 are pathetic by comparison, but I have no intention of getting my lifts back to where they were when I was younger, rather I'm trying to maintain as much strength as possible without damaging my knee further so as to prolong the inevitable knee replacement I'll probably have to get in my early 50's.

You can kill a man, but you can't kill an idea.

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