To Journalists Writing about Breast Cancer Awareness Month

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. As you are covering related events and newsworthy stories during that period, please remember the silent victims, namely the primary support persons, and consider contacting me when you are looking for experts to interview.

I went through the breast cancer experience with my wife, Emily, fourteen years ago. (She’s fine now, thank you.) What I discovered in my search for resources to guide me was that there were many—books, articles, websites, brochures in hospital waiting rooms—that could help me to take care of her. But there was nothing about how I could keep sane while I was helping her.

I realized through that experience that, while she was the perceived victim, I was the silent victim, and I needed help on how to keep sane so that I could help her.

That resource didn’t’ exist. So I wrote it. The revised, expanded second edition of Your Partner Has Breast Cancer: 21 Ways to Keep Sane as a Support Person on Your Journey from Victim to Survivor came out as an ebook last year. It has just been released as a print book.

I’m a long-time author, editor, and publisher. I became an expert on keeping sane as a breast cancer support person while making all the mistakes during my own caregiver experience. My main message to caregivers is that you can’t take care of your loved ones if you aren’t taking care of yourself. This message is particularly important for men, who make up the majority of primary support people and yet are socially conditioned to withhold their feelings and not ask for help.

In our interview, we can discuss

  • How to participate in your partner’s recovery
  • When to give her space while finding your own space
  • Finding a spiritual comfort zone to share

and much more.

As Marc Heyison, founder of Men Against Breast Cancer, wrote: “…these ways will have a powerful impact in helping all support people, but especially guys who may be struggling to be loving partners….”

Here is my contact information:

Email: ken@azenphonypress.com

Website: http://azenphonypress.com/books/breastcancer.html

I’m happy to talk to you at your convenience.

Sincerely,

Ken Wachsberger

My First Ebook Addresses Needs of Breast Cancer Caregivers

Ninety-nine out of 100 breast cancer victims, according to accepted statistics, are women, which means that men are by far the most likely primary caregivers. And yet men are the most inept at asking for help, especially in taking care of themselves.

With that idea in mind, I’m pleased to announce release of the smashwords.com and amazon.com ebook versions of Your Partner Has Breast Cancer: 21 Ways to Keep Sane as a Support Person on Your Journey from Victim to Survivor. It is available for free from smashwords.com through July 7, the end of the July 4th weekend. I invite anyone with any passing interest in breast cancer or its caregivers to download it in your favorite version.

My request: Please give it a review on smashwords.com and amazon.com in the next two weeks and encourage your favorite breast cancer organization to provide a link to the smashwords.com site on their resources page.

In its original version, released in Fall 2000, Your Partner Has Breast Cancer was written to satisfy my own need to figure out how to keep sane while I was coping with Emily’s breast cancer adventure and also losing my job during that summer. The first draft was finished at the hospital while Emily was receiving her final chemotherapy treatment.

This newly revised and expanded second edition is even better. It includes

  •  Expanded discussion of the 21 ways;
  • “The Cancer Journals,” a section I added for support people to use as a guide and an inspiration to write and share their own journals;
  • A list of additional resources to help the support person keep sane; and
  • A new focus on becoming a survivor, not just being a victim.

While the breast cancer patient is the designated victim, with good reason, the support person, the caregiver, is the silent victim, the one who takes on both shares of the household chores; answers questions from well-wishers; assumes double income responsibility; becomes both parents; feeds, clothes, and washes the designated victim; sleeps less; and is always the pillar of strength, even when he or she doesn’t feel like a pillar of strength.

Your Partner Has Breast Cancer is dedicated to the silent victims—especially husbands, who form by far the largest bloc of support persons and yet are the most inept at asking for help.

I know from my own experience. When I needed help for myself, I found a lot of material on how I could help Emily but nothing on how I could help myself. This book is what I needed then; I am confident it is exactly what you need now. You can’t help your partner if you aren’t helping yourself.”

By addressing the emotional needs of the main support person, Your Partner Has Breast Cancer fills an important void that social workers, religious leaders, support people, surgeons, and nursing staff agree has been empty for too long.

“Ken has in a thoughtful and caring way shared effective ways that worked for him as he was a great husband and father supporting his wife and children in his family’s battle against breast cancer. I am confident that these ways will have a powerful impact in helping all support people, but especially guys who may be struggling, to be loving partners as they battle breast cancer in their families.”—Marc Heyison, President/Founder, Men Against Breast Cancer

“All I can say is wow! I found this booklet helpful, informative, moving, and clearly a labor of love.”—Dr. Helen Pass, Director, Division of Breast Surgery, and Co-Director of Women’s Breast Center, Stamford Hospital, Stamford, CT

Download it today. And please take a few minutes to share your review with others.