fragmentedream (fragmentedream) wrote in watching_cancer,

Relationships Post-diagnosis

Hello! My name is Patricia Metzger and I am a graduate student studying clinical psychology. Like you, I have been faced my own cancer diagnosis, along with having supported several family members and friends diagnosed with a wide range of cancers and other life-threatening diseases. These experiences have forever touched my life and have inspired me to attempt to better understand the experiences of those facing cancer and other life threatening illnesses.

I am currently conducting a study examining interpersonal relationships and communication amongst those facing cancer or another life threatening disease. I hope to gain a greater understanding of cancer's impact on relationships, the role of communication following a diagnosis, and it's role in psychological health and relationship development.

I am currently seeking participants in a study of relationships after one partner has received a diagnosis of cancer. Any person who is part of a serious, long term relationship (e.g., married, partnered, engaged, etc.) and has either received such a diagnosis, or has a spouse/partner with a diagnosis, is invited to participate. Both halves of the couple are asked to complete the survey; if both persons complete it, they will receive $25 compensaion. Alternatively, these funds can be donated to a charitable organization of your choice, such as the American Cancer Society, National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization, Susan G. Komen Foundation, or any other organization of your choosing.

You and your spouse are invited to participate in a brief study lasting no more than 20 minutes - most persons complete the survey in just 10-15 minutes. It will ask you about your experiences following diagnosis with cancer. Only persons who are part of a long-term relationship should complete the survey; we also ask you to refer your spouse/partner to also complete the questionnaire. All responses are confidential and anonymous; no identifying information will be collected. Responses will be used only in aggregate form, so that no one can identify your responses.

The web address for the study is:

In exchange for completion, $25 compensation will be offered to couples where both persons complete the study. Funds are only available if BOTH partners complete the survey. You are asked, following your completion, to ask your spouse/partner to also complete the study. You should simply refer them to the same web address noted above. Available funds can be mailed to you, or donated to a charity of your choice. If you choose to have funds mailed to you, contact information will be stored separately from your survey responses.

To refer your spouse/partner and receive compensation, you should direct your spouse/partner to this same survey link ( Completion by both you and your spouse/partner will better help us understand relational issues resulting from diagnosis and will help us to develop interventions, treatments, and therapies that will facilitate coping with this difficult life event.

If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, please contact me at the following email address:

Thank you very much for your assistance on this project! Completion will help us better address the needs of those facing cancer and other serious illnesses so as to minimize the stressors at this time. If interested, please contact me via email ( for the results of the study.

Again, you can access this brief study at:


Patricia L. Metzger, M.S.
University of Wyoming
Department of Psychology

NOTE: Please encourage your partner to take this! It's a small amount of time and is a huge help in the long-term goal of developing interventions for those facing this horrible illness - understanding BOTH sides of the story takes this someplace research hasn't gone. THANKS for your help!!
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