“I Just Think of Myself as Judy’s Husband”: Taking Care of a Spouse With Cancer

September 20, 2018
Claire Smith, ASCO staff

Scott Joy is a survivor of testicular cancer and a LIVESTRONG senior leader. Aditi Narayan is a social worker and Director of Programs & Strategy at LIVESTRONG. Mike Threadgould is Senior Manager of Marketing & Communications at LIVESTRONG.

This content was developed in collaboration with LIVESTRONG.

Scott Joy was a 10-year survivor of testicular cancer and patient advocate when his wife, Judy, was diagnosed with multiple myeloma in 2013. Although he initially felt prepared due to his own experience, he learned that being a caregiver is very different from the experience of being a patient.share on twitter Just 3 months after her diagnosis, Judy passed away. Now Scott honors her memory through his advocacy work.

In this podcast interview with Aditi Narayan and Mike Threadgould of LIVESTRONG, Scott discusses his experience as a caregiver, including some of the bright spots and challenges, things he wishes he had known at the time, and tips for other caregivers.

  • What Scott would tell someone who is starting their role as a caregiver. [3:19]
  • How Scott’s experience of caring for his wife was different than his experience as a patient. [6:03]
  • What it was like taking care of 4 children and managing daily routines while also caring for his wife. [8:49]
  • Why it was hard for Scott to find the right balance of taking time to himself. [12:53]
  • What support resources Scott was able to take advantage of, and what else he wished was available for himself and his children. [15:11]
  • How Scott and Judy’s relationship was affected, and what else he wished they had talked about together and with the health care team. [19:36]
  • How Scott feels about the word “caregiver.” [23:12]

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