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Guilt about moving

Community Member
I'm currently middle aged living at home with my mum and stepdad. Laat year he was diagnosed with cancer. I was taking care of both of them and mums depression and anxiety become worse from stepdads cancer. After many fights and being exhausted i decided it was time to move out of town and build a life for myself knowing my stepdad was cancer free after treatment and surgery. Ive already got a job lined up and a moving date but my stepdad in the past week has been told the cancer is back and now I'm consumed with guilt and anxiety for still wanting to move. I need some advice please.
6 Replies 6

white knight
Community Champion
Community Champion

Hi sunflower, welcome

I dont know about any other relatives around but he isnt your blood dad so I cant see why you should feel guilt.

By moving out you'll end up in the same situation that a daughter would be in if they had moved out 20 years ago and made a life for herself.

I think you've slowly taken on the carer role and its time to care but care also for yourself.


Topic: running around trying to save the world- beyondblue

Topic: who cares for the carer?- beyondblue

Topic: the balance of your life- beyondblue

Good luck. Post anytime

Tony WK

Blue Voices Member
Blue Voices Member

Hi Sunflower2017,

Welcome to the forums and thanks for your post.

Oh man, what a difficult situation you're in. I can imagine it would be like being a bit torn; knowing that you've cared so much for them but now wanting to move and start your new job.

I wish that I could give you advice, but I don't know you or your family so I wouldn't feel right doing so. This is your decision. It's a tough one I know, but it's yours to make.

What do you think are the pro's and cons' here? Sometimes it can help to try and take a bit of a practical approach when feeling overwhelmed with decisions. If you were to go and take care of your stepdad, how long do you think you would be living at home? How much of an investment would that be of your time and energy? If you were to go with the job; how do you think you'd feel knowing that you've left?

I also wonder if it might be helpful looking at other support for him; I'm sure that you've probably exhausted these options but if not, sometimes having that extra support (whether it's home care nurses, social workers, friends, family, co-workers) may make you feel a little more at ease.

Hope this helps and hope that you enjoy being apart of the BB forums πŸ™‚

Community Member

Hi Sunflower,

welcome to this forum, how are you feeling today?

As I don't know much about your family I don't feel it's appropriate for me to try and offer advice as I wouldn't want to offend you in any way. But it is a tough decision that you have to make.

Have you try talking with your mum and stepdad and see what do they think? Sometime we might be surprised at our parents answer. Does your stepdad have other children who could provide help and support? What are the things that your parents will need from you if you were to stay and help? Would that be things that only you could do to help or could someone else do, like a nurse?

I hope you manage to weigh the pros and cons and reach a decision.

Champion Alumni
Champion Alumni
hello Sunflower, good replies from those above me, sorry, welcome to the forum.
You can only do so much for your stepdad, you're there to help, but he can also get help from the hospital who can pick up and drive him home to and from appointments.
I had an elderly friend who had cancer and he had to keep going down to Melbourne 2 1/2 hours away, so I wasn't able to take him, his children were useless and didn't do much at all, so I had to organise this through the hospital because I had to work.
Your step dad can have any medication delivered to the house, plus he can orgainse his doctor to do home visits if needed.
If he has a taxi directorate card then taxi fees will be half price.
If circumstances were different then a decision would be easy, but as they are different and there are constant arguments, then you are going to feel worse if you stay, you would have lost that opportunity so this is going to have a greater effect on you.
As has been said does he have any children, close brother, sister who can help him, as sorry as I am about his cancer, you are missing out on being able to start your own life, so I suggest move, if you don't you'll be very disappointed, no matter what is being said to you. Geoff.

Community Member
My stepdad was told today the cancer is terminal and that radiation and chemo are only to prolong life. I still want to move but the guilt is skyhigh now.

Hi Sunflower2017,

Thanks for your post.

Sorry that you've had to wait a while for a reply!

I'm sorry to hear that the cancer is now terminal and I can see how it would really be causing you to feel guilty. It's an awful thing to hear.

Cs2h made a really good point here about having a chat with your mum and stepdad. How do they feel about needing you at home or the idea of moving away? What is it that they need right now? On one hand I could see that because he's terminal they might need extra support, but on the other hand often people want to have that sense of pride and independence; potentially meaning he doesn't want you to see him struggle as he gets more unwell.

I think it would be great to try and bounce this off another third person too; and I guess even though were a support forum we are always limited in how much we can know about you and your family. A counsellor on the other hand would be able to get a much better picture of what's going on and how better to support you. Perhaps there could be compromises about taking time off but still visiting; I'm not sure. It's really hard to know what to suggest or how to support you given theres so much we don't know.

I hope that this helps some; I really encourage you to reach out more so that you're not so alone in it all.