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Taking Care Of Yourself

THERE’S NO EASY WAY TO ADJUST to a metastatic breast cancer (MBC) diagnosis. But there are things you can do to help you—and others—take care of your health.

Give yourself time to adjust to a new normal. Even with all of the changes, there’s still room for fulfillment and the things you love in life.

Below, find tips and approaches for: Coping with stress, motherhood, relationships, and nutrition.

Coping With Stress

Coping With Stress

Do your best to take good care of your mental and emotional well-being—you’ll feel better equipped to manage your total health.

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Finding ways to manage your stress can help you:

  • Reduce tension
  • Sleep better
  • Enjoy your time with people, places, and things you love

The key is finding something that really works for you as a stress reducer. Explore—and don’t be afraid to try something new. Some people find relief through relaxation techniques, creating art, exercise, laughter, or spending time with a beloved pet. Consult with your doctor about what might work best for you.

Motherhood

Motherhood

Communicating with your children about metastatic breast cancer can be difficult and complex.

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Here are some considerations that may help you figure out the best approach for you and your family:

  • Consider what your children need and what you need
  • Consider your children’s ages and level of understanding
  • Consider getting help—you don’t have to do this alone. A social worker or psychiatrist can help you (and your spouse) prepare for conversations, questions, and moving forward together

Relationships: Dating, Intimacy, and Partners

Relationships: Dating, Intimacy, and Partners

If you’ve been diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer, you may be thinking about the impact on your relationships.

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Dating

Every woman’s experience with MBC is unique and your feelings about dating will be, too. If you’re interested in pursuing dating, you should go for it.

Tips for getting out there:

  • Meeting people—You may feel differently about where and how you meet new people. Ask a friend to set you up. Or try online dating. If you’re nervous about disclosing your diagnosis, there are dating websites that connect people with health conditions—which may make talking about MBC feel like less of an issue.
  • Feeling confident—Treatment can affect your physical appearance and how you feel about it. Accepting these changes can help you feel less focused on them. Bonus: This is a great time to treat yourself to some new makeup, accessories, or clothes that make you feel really good.
  • Getting support—Enlist a cheering section! If you’re feeling apprehensive, talk to a close friend who can help you focus on all of the wonderful things you’d bring to any relationship.
  • Handling emotions—First things first, be gentle with yourself! Fatigue and stress can make it hard to get enthusiastic about dating and anxiety or depression may amplify any relationship worries about dating. If dating starts to feel overwhelming, it can also help to focus only on today —and alleviate any pressure about the future.

Sex & Intimacy

Intimacy is an important part of relationships and you may be worried about how your diagnosis and treatment will impact your sex life—both physically and emotionally.

These concerns are totally normal and getting informed can help you cope with the changes in your body and mood to figure out what’s right for you and your partner.

You & Your Partner

Navigating an MBC diagnosis with your spouse or partner can sometimes strain your relationship. Where there’s worry, there may be stress, anxiety, and breakdowns in communication. But there’s also the opportunity to work together and forge a new kind of strength and closeness.

You may want to:

  • Set aside regular times to talk and check in. Good communication is essential to partnership
  • Find ways to support and unburden your partner
  • Be open about intimacy—any concerns are normal and common
  • Consider couples counseling. You may need help navigating this new chapter

The Importance of Good Nutrition

The Importance of Good Nutrition

Eating well is so important during metastatic breast cancer treatment.

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Good nutrition can:

  • Help your body maintain strength
  • Help repair tissue damage

Managing your overall health is key while on treatment for metastatic breast cancer. Before making changes in diet or exercise, talk to your healthcare provider.

Living with MBC takes support.

We’re here to help.

Turn to Pfizer Oncology Together to learn about financial assistance resources and get personalized support from one of our dedicated Care Champions.

CALL 1-844-9-IBRANCE (Monday–Friday 8 AM–8 PM ET)