UA-118272889-1 1739406299646766 Colon cancer and dealing with the emotional turmoil men go through with guest and cancer survivor Joe Bullock - WE Have Cancer

Episode 159

Published on:

8th Sep 2020

Colon cancer and Dealing With the Emotional Turmoil Men Go Through With Cancer Survivor Joe Bullock

In this episode of the "WE Have Cancer" podcast, Lee talks with Joe Bullock about his personal experiences with colon cancer and the creation of groups to help men share during their cancer diagnosis, treatment, and after-effects of survival.

From getting his diagnosis and how cancer impacted his relationship with his wife to creating the Howling Place group, Joe talks about the sense of isolation and the loss of personal identity many men go through when dealing with cancer. This is a must-listen episode for men struggling to find their place, their feelings, and others they can talk to about their cancer diagnosis, treatment, and even the aftermath of survival.

Guest biography:

Joe Bullock is one of the founders of the Howling Place, along with Trevor Maxwell. After being diagnosed with colon cancer in 2018, Joe was not only able to make it through his journey but become a counselor for men dealing with their own cancer diagnosis and the trauma the disease leaves with those it touches.

Table of contents:

  • Chadwick Boseman's death from colorectal cancer

Lee talks a bit about Chadwick’s untimely passing and how it relates to his own personal life and battle.

  • Introduction of guest Joe Bullock

Lee introduces Joe and some of the work they’ve done together, as well as their shared experience with colon cancer.

  • Joe’s colon cancer diagnosis and his support network

Joe opens up about originally getting diagnosed and how his wife, an RN, was on top of things from a clinical perspective while he struggled with the emotional side of his colon cancer diagnosis.

  • How Joe and Trevor Maxwell came together to form the Facebook group

Joe talks about getting the all-clear from his doctors and the delayed emotions that came with it. He also discusses meeting Trevor and the foundation of the Howling Place Facebook group in an effort to help other men to not isolate and feel alone in their cancer diagnosis.

  • You had an identity before cancer and the wolfpack mentality

One of the most important but less-often talked about points is people losing their identity when they’ve had a cancer diagnosis. Joe and Lee talk about how the feeling that a cancer diagnosis encompasses all of life and instead, taking the time to remember the activities, and hobbies you enjoyed before in an effort to restore your identity.

  • Men opening up emotionally

Lee shares an experience of noticing men typically weren’t at conferences or meetings because they felt awkward about sharing their feelings and vulnerabilities. Joe and Lee talk about how the Facebook group tries to combat this problem by creating a more male-focused space where guys can open up and be vulnerable together.

  • Emotional fatigue as a moderator and counselor

Lee pointed out Joe often takes the time to be a counselor for others and how the emotional drain many go through, both as active participants and for those that struggle to find their place in groups.

  • Joe’s impact on a pediatric cancer patient

Through a connection at Colon Town, Joe was able to help a pediatric cancer patient and his family who was in town. That included an encouragement-card drive that brought at least 1,000 cards of support through his treatment.

  • The death of Joe’s father and others, and how they provided grow and guidance

Through the hardship of helping his father pass from cancer despite their strained relationship and the passing of others in the community, Joe was able to come out on the other side with a more meaningful understanding of how being a pillar of support could help him and others while becoming his purpose and passion.

Links mentioned in the show:

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Man Up To Cancer

Man Up to Cancer – The Howling Place Facebook Group

Interview with Charles Griffin

The Colon Club

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About the Podcast

WE Have Cancer
Providing information, inspiration and hope to those touched by cancer.
Each year more than 12 million people will hear the devastating words "you have cancer."

In each episode of WE Have Cancer we share the stories of patients, survivors, caregivers and medical professionals as a way to provide information, inspiration and hope to those touched by cancer.

The host, Lee Silverstein, is a survivor of a rare form of pediatric kidney cancer and has been battling stage 4 colon cancer since 2011.

About your host

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Lee & Linda Silverstein

In 2011, just four months after they began dating, Lee was diagnosed with Stage 2 colon cancer. A year and a half later, 17 days after their honeymoon, they learned that Lee’s cancer had spread to his liver; he was now Stage 4. Through numerous surgeries, chemotherapy infusions and assorted other treatments, Linda has been by his side. Despite cancer, Lee and Linda say unequivocally these have been the best years of their lives.

In 2015 Lee launched this podcast as a way to provide information, inspiration and hope to those affected by cancer.

Lee and Linda live in Florida with their Westie Terrier, Fergie.

The WE Have Cancer podcast is supported by The Colon Cancer Coalition -