Friday, December 24, 2010

" not trivialize what has happened to us..."

I wanted to add this little blurb from the popular "Annies Mailbox", a syndicated column written by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar, longtime editors of the Ann Landers column. Because it applied to what happened to me when I was finally diagnosed with avery rare neurological disease called Chronic Inflammatory Demyelinating Polyradiculoneuropathy (CIDP) in 2002, and I'm sure many others in the same position, I thought I would print it to remind families and others  that sometimes things aren't always as they they seem.

"Dear Annie: I read the reply from "Another Patient," who said she had a mastectomy, but because she didn't require radiation and chemo, people didn't offer any support. I had the same problem 23 years ago.

In my case, it was malignant melanoma, a potentially deadly form of cancer. It fortunately was caught early, and after two surgeries, the doctors said I didn't need chemo or radiation. I was left with a 6-inch scar on my thigh and some bewildered feelings. Because there was no further treatment, my family decided that I wasn't sick and never had been. I received zero support, not even from my husband.

I believe they found it easier to deny my illness than to accept that I had cancer. Ignore it, it goes away. Yes, some of us want to keep it private. But please, readers, do not trivialize what has happened to us. -- Scarred but Doing Fine"

Annie's Mailbox is written by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar, longtime editors of the Ann Landers column. Please e-mail your questions to, or write to: Annie's Mailbox, c/o Creators Syndicate, 5777 W. Century Blvd., Ste. 700, Los Angeles, CA 90045. To find out more about Annie's Mailbox and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at


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