I am 29 and just left an abusive marriage and moved back in with my parents. My dad has been diagnosed with stage 3 lung cancer, and has been going through treatment for several months. He has never been emotionally available throughout my entire life, but right when he was first diagnosed his outlook on life completely changed and he was openly loving to everyone in the family. His attitude about fighting his cancer was very good, and it made me hopeful about him being able to beat it. Over time, as the chemo makes him feel worse, he has become increasingly negative and toxic to be around. I try my best to let him know I love him, and remind him of the positives, but he has a negative comeback for every single thing I say. I’m dealing with my own grief over my marriage as well as worry about him, and his constant negativity is draining my energy and making me feel emotionally unsafe. I know he is suffering and I get that (I have a chronic pain condition myself), but it is as if he’s determined to be angry and negative, not to feel better. He loudly complains about how nasty the healthy food we cook for him is, he blows everything out of proportion, and tells me I’m wrong every time I open my mouth. I am very concerned that his depression is deepening and I sometimes worry about him considering self harm, because he seems to see nothing positive in life at all anymore. He doesn’t believe in therapy, which I had urged him to use.
Am I going to need to have an intervention? He doesn’t respect my opinions, so I’m not sure how much this would help. At what point do I just accept that he doesn’t want to be positive, and disconnect from him emotionally? How can I protect myself from this as we live in the same house and we are often home together every day? I am an empath and this is very hard to see happening.