Once you hit the mark of being cancer free for five or more years, you may feel some sense of relief. But, you may also feel uncertainty or anxiety around your future. Why are those treatment effects still lingering? Will I ever feel the same as I did before breast cancer? And additionally, where do I fit in? We often hear from long-term survivors that they don’t necessarily feel like they have a place in the breast cancer community anymore. They may have aged out of the “young” survivor population, yet don’t identify with friends or family members who may have breast cancer now in their late 40s or 50s.
No one understands this better than long-term survivors. That’s why YSC is excited to launch a brand new resource: Beyond 5 Years: A Navigator for Long-Term Survivors.
YSC wanted to learn more about what long-term survivorship means for young women. So, we set out to really dive deep into the issues unique to this population and create a guidebook just for you. We started by surveying nearly 500 women who identified as young long-term survivors. With their help, we identified the most pressing topics and questions that were on their minds. Then by conducting small focus groups, we were able to discuss these issues in greater detail with long-term survivors and create a robust set of information to include in the Long-Term Navigator.
What we found is that, though there are similar issues as when a young woman first finishes her treatment, there are more that are unique to long-term survivorship. Many of those topics are explored in depth in the Long-Term Navigator—creating a resource dedicated to your specific questions and concerns:
– Managing long-term care and side effects
– Maintaining overall health and wellness, including diet, exercise and green living
– Cultivating your relationships and communicating with family
– Heredity and educating your children and loved ones about their own family history and risk
– Ongoing financial, legal and career issues and how to tackle those
– Defining what your life means after breast cancer
We hope that this information provides the support that so many long-term survivors say is lacking for their population. Interested in getting a free copy? You can order Beyond 5 Years: A Navigator for Long-Term Survivors or download a copy .
The Long-Term Navigator complements YSC’s existing Navigator series which is designed to support and educate young women at every phase of their breast cancer experience. The other guidebooks include the Newly Diagnosed Navigator, Post-Treatment Navigator and Metastatic Navigator.
Are you a healthcare provider who treats young women? You may also be interested in YSC’s Intro Kit—a great way to share all of YSC’s resources with the young survivors you see.