My sister is acting like a fool! I want to say something to her, but feel as though I can not. You see she has been on chemo meds for some time now and I am not sure if that has something to do with it. I know she is not feeling all that well, and has been going through a rough time lately. She is blowing everything out of proportion and it is making me crazy. I try to reason with her, but she will have nothing to do with it. She tends to harp on things and repeats herself all the time. Day in and day out I hear the same complaints. Help me figure this out.


Dear Help,

I am so sorry to hear about your sisters health problems. Having any form of cancer and having to go through chemo, just plain sucks. It takes it’s toll physically as well as mentally on everyone. Even close family members don’t know how to handle the roller coaster ride everyone is on.
I have known a lot of people on chemo, some in my own family and I have seen it turn the sweetest person into a beast. Two dear friends of mine, one with breast cancer and one with colon cancer acted completely different on chemo. Both actually wore a tee shirt that had, “I Have Chemo Brain” on it that they received from the center they had their treatments.
Sue, with breast cancer internalized everything and would withdrawal into herself. She had tremendous memory issues and was afraid others would notice so she would stay silent. She was always so alive and happy but the fear, meds and physical devastation left her withdrawn, quiet, fearful and sad.
John, with colon cancer became angry, verbally nasty and argumentative. He was always a very physically fit guy who worked out doors and was on the go. He was so shocked and disgusted that the cancer and the meds made him lose a lot of weight, sick and tired he just took out his frustration on everyone and he admitted as much.
In my opinion, if this continues it is time to sit down with her and have a one on one conversation about what she is feeling.
This is your sister and my hope is she’ll listen. Maybe you two could take a day together, just the two of you and go shopping, for lunch or some middle ground and she will open up about her fear or feelings. If that is not possible maybe you could speak to her husband or another family member to see what they have heard or seen from her.
This is a very difficult wire you walk Help because either way you could lose your balance. I am sure you have been patient and overlooked a lot and if her behavior doesn’t get better you will have no choice but to address it.
Hey, maybe she is looking for someone to question her so she can talk.

One Tough Muther

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