When a loved one tells you they have received a cancer diagnosis you know that for them it’s a life changing experience and they will have some huge challenges to face. One of these challenges can be telling the people they love; knowing how to help when someone close to you tells them they have cancer is something we should all learn.
Read on for common dos and don’ts that we have come across:
Offer Support - Ultimately a cancer patient needs all the support they can get, so offer your support whenever and however they may need it. This could be offering to run simple errands like doing the grocery shopping or offering to do everyday chores around the home. Offering to cook meals or prepare food is another extremely helpful practice. You often ask us about the best gifts for cancer patients. we suggest the kindness of cooking.
Listen - Know when to listen, and make sure you listen attentively. Facing cancer is a terrifying time for everyone involved, sometimes your loved one may just want to talk about how they are feeling or discuss, in-depth, their condition. Learn to listen without getting distracted and without interrupting, a good listener can be invaluable. Sometimes feedback is not necessary – although sometimes your thoughts are essential – so learn when to be quiet and when to offer comfort.
Don’t change - Don’t let the fear of cancer scare you away. Make sure you don’t become distant and make contact whenever you can with visits, calls and emails. Don’t let a cancer diagnosis change your relationship. Don’t now identify your friend or colleague as a cancer patient, keep your relationship as normal as possible – it should not revolve around the illness. Don’t only ever talk about cancer related topics. Don’t dismiss the seriousness of the situation; the fears and issues a cancer patient faces are real and happening right now. Don’t make promises you can’t keep. It’s a scary time for your loved one or friend, but you can help make it a little better Get in touch with us if you have any questions