Too often, husbands can feel helpless watching their wives struggle with the intense emotions associated with cancer treatment and reconstructive breast surgery. If you’re not sure how to support your wife during this challenging time, these three suggestions can help.
1. Take Some Time
Even though breast reconstruction can provide a very positive focus following breast cancer for many women, that doesn’t mean that the hard part is over. Your wife might feel lonely, isolated, stressed or confused at any point during the reconstruction process. I recommend husbands take time off work to make her the top priority during this period and set other obligations aside for a week or two.
2. Help around the House
- One of the best recovery tips after breast reconstruction is for women not to try and do everything themselves. Husbands can be proactive about encouraging this by taking care of things around the house on their own. For some families, that might mean planning and preparing the meals, while other women could need help getting little ones ready for school or bed. Look for the places you can help the most, and then jump in.
3. Offer Emotional Support
This is a critical time to set male stoicism aside and offer all the demonstrative support your wife needs. Try not to judge the roller coaster of emotions she’s likely feeling (and expressing), and don’t underestimate the incredible power of a simple hug delivered with a reassurance that everything will be okay. As her husband, you’re in the ideal position to give your wife all the encouragement she needs to feel supported, fully sensual, feminine and loved as she transitions from the loss of her breast to enjoying her new figure.