Blood cancer and the rise of cost of living

Hi everybody. I’m just sitting watching the news and the reports on the inevitable rise in energy bills. This follows me doing my weekly shopping and noticing again how much the total has gone up in the last couple of weeks - I’ve suddenly started to panic!!!

I wondered if anybody else was feeling the same. I’m sure we all have different financial challenges depending on our diagnosis, our current health, age, work status and I’m sure many other factors. I just thought this would be a good space to share our concerns so that we can support each other.

A couple of years ago I reduced my work hours from full time to three and a half days. My job as a teacher was challenging and with a follicular lymphoma diagnosis I decided I needed more time for me and the family. Our finances took a hit then. We were unable to save as much and had to be careful. It was tough but my mental well-being improved, my family time improved and it benefitted us all.

Now, two years on I’m having to consider going back full time. The thought of it fills me with dread. How will I manage quality time with my teenage daughters? How will I make time for me and the family at the weekend as it will now be taken up with household chores? Will my mental health suffer again? On the other hand, if I don’t, how will I afford university fees in a couple of years? How will we be able to save for a holiday?

The conversation I’m having in my head is driving me crazy. I don’t want to do it but I’m starting to think the choice may be taken out of my hands.

It would be great to hear how others are feeling.


Oh @Nichola75 thanks so much for raising this subject I was brought up that you do not talk about money issues, but I really need to.
However I hate talking about money problems or even worse admitting or asking for help.
Everyone is talking in the media about the cost of and proposed cost living rises, it is all I am hearing about and I feel a sick feeling in my stomach.
Every time I buy anything, get my usual supermarket delivery, or put petrol in the car the costs are going up.
Then there are all the looming enormous price hikes with utility bills we are hearing about.
Pre blood cancer when my son was about 10 yrs old I was working full time, and actually had 3 other little jobs, 2 of which I did at home in the evenings and 1 at a greengrocers and I can remember feeding my child and going without myself.
I lived on digestive biccies and he lived on fruit and veg, he still has an aversion to cauliflower cheese to this day !!!
I dread the added costs of school holidays or my child being at home more.
Conversely buying school uniforms and then nearly every night I was re-patching his knees.
Then there was the cost of childcare and telling my son he could not have friends round (because I could not feed them).
Wrapping myself in a blanket in the evenings, candles instead of lighting etc.
So now years later I have blood cancer and that brings extra costs, I am still virtually isolating and feel the cold more so my utility bills will be higher, I will use more fuel getting to medical appointments etc.
I will have to have less coffees with my friends and I have realised that this is so important for my mental wellbeing.
And also a big one is I do not deal with stress and anxiety as well now.
I am still feeling sick to the stomach also aware I keep on thinking back to those days with my son. I have also just turned the light off.
Those are just some of my personal thoughts and I am aware others will have very different ones like disability issues, working from home, emotional and mental health etc.
Thanks again @Nichola75 I needed to tell you all this.


Hi @Erica. Thanks so much for replying. We seem to be experiencing the same panic and yucky feeling in our stomach - it’s horrible isn’t it!
It’s really interesting reading about your experiences working when your son was younger. My mum held down lots of jobs to and felt that same guilt. Now it seems lots of us will be feeling that again.
I hate the fact that you have to worry about putting your heating on - it’s just not fair is it. These shouldn’t be things we have to worry about in this day and age. So many things that will affect everyday living.
I’ve loved reading about you seeing friends again and having coffee. Those treats you’ve waited so long for. How dare they be taken away. It makes me really angry that the social contact we have, and still are craving could be affected once again.
Thank again for replying and sharing, even if it’s something you wouldn’t normally talk about.
Lots of love X


Excellent start to this post @Nichola75 extended by @Erica and I’m so sorry for each of your plights and what you both gone through and it’s amazing you’ve started this thread as I feel we are still as a majority feeling the calm before the storm.

I was speaking to someone earlier today and I feel like we are in Jan 2020 hearing about a virus effecting China and though being aware of it, it quite hadn’t hit home that it was going to effect me and that trust in the powers that be would have it contained. And I have a feeling where it’s all over the news but slowly people are going to feel the pinch.

I can’t quite put my finger on it but I feel there are a lot of similarities between covid and the cost of living crisis. Just like there were a lot of people in denial of the virus or the impact in could have to vulnerable people the same will be from the winners of things going up or those that won’t feel the financial constraints as others will and the fact the government haven’t all taken a summer holiday and sorted in-house issues is a bit of a joke.

What I don’t think people are aware of as much is the timing of all this. Cost of electricity and gas is going up in the winter! A time where people use and need this the most. Another forgotten thing is Christmas. I don’t think currently many would see cutting their electricity use or gas use an issue because there is plenty to do in the summer and household bills (size of residency dependent) often drop in usage though for families having kids home 24/7 and holidays costs sometimes overrides this.

Basically as well as my concerns and worries for people over the winter months and I’m also concerned about peoples approaches to Christmas and the unnecessary pressures and attitudes it brings financially on people.

I love a good metaphor and simile and feel a tsunami is coming but to describe the present at the moment we are at the point where the tide has been pushed back and a gentle breeze is being felt.

I’m trying to keep this blood cancer related but it’s tough as I feel more for my marginally elderly parents than myself at the moment.

People haven’t saved money for it to spent on electricity food and gas. If that’s what years of working, sacrifice and hard graft has materialised for… then what is the point?!

There was a theory where staying in was a way of saving money… now it’s going to be the opposite.

Apologies if this sounds like a rant and this post is all over the place. I could say so much more but I’ll save it for when it’s connected to other peoples responses to this post.

With covid continuously mutating, people not testing, people neglecting their health and not keeping warm increasing colds and flu, I am concerned and worried especially over the next few months for not just me but for others. This is definitely is a “we” problem and really don’t know how anyone can sort out without blaming it on either covid or Russia and saying we are powerless to do owt so just deal with it.


Nichola n Errica thku for raising the subject. Just wondering if the registered immunisuppressed or cancer diagnosed should b able to get extra support towards the rising heating costs. Pre-follicilar cancer diagnosis i never felt the cold much but that has totally changed for me. So cancer does affect our ability to get n keep warm naturally. Maybe our local councillors should b made aware of this n give us extra consideration as regards payments towards the extra costs we now have. What do others think n how do we go about raising it.


I thought there my comment had been removed. Anyway i see vulnerable households mentioned in the tabaloids n also disability allowance so maybe we r being considered. But thing is cancer follows under the disability act but we dont all claim allowances so not sure where it all fits with regard to clarity of support. For me anyway i will just work on in my parttime job rather than risk being left destitude n cold might i add. Have a lovely day everyone


I think at the moment we are just having to deal with it aren’t we and just see what comes next. Scary times!

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I’ll carry in working like you @Ruth2. Like @Rammie18 said, there are so many groups of people who are going to become even more vulnerable than they are now. Scary times :grimacing:

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Hi @Ruth2 yes, who knows who will get what help, if any.
I just get fed up and more and more angry with the media hype.
It sound as if you are doing all you can with your part time job.
Look after yourself

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Hi @Nichola75,
Thank you so much for starting this thread & also for being so brilliantly open & honest with your own fears of the current cost of living crisis. I think so many people will be bale to relate Nichola.
This is a topic that we have been discussing as a team really frequently of late and certainly one we were intending on bringing to the forum, so a really big thank you for starting us off and in many ways allowing people to have a safe space to talk openly about financial worries, what is sometimes not spoken about enough.
The financial impact of cancer can be really tricky to manage and is often not felt until certain point of a person journey but in the current climate like everyone who has contributed to this thread has highlighted- we are all very much beginning to feel the tidal effect of the crisis and the uncertainty of what is still to come.
Financial worries should simply not be a side effect of cancer and it may be helpful to know that there is often help out there and knowing where to begin with accessing financial support can be half the battle. This page is a brief introduction to some of the organisations that hold a number of financial support services- Cancer charities | Coping with cancer | Cancer Research UK.
Please do know if you would ever like to talk things through more with regards to welfare ( government based support) or indeed anything at all, we are always on hand to help point you in the right direction- 0808 2080 888.

Take Care, Lauran