Cancer is something that no one ever wants to have to face. The fact is, though, that at some point in your life, someone you love will likely come down with some form of cancer. When that happens, it’s important to know how to respond so that you can show them the support and love that they need to help them through their difficult diagnosis and treatment.
Be a Listener
One of the biggest challenges for people facing cancer treatment is that it can feel to them as though they are alone. That’s why a listening ear can sometimes be the best support you can give. By being a safe place for your family member to talk, cry, and share their emotions, they will always know that they are not alone, even on their darkest days. This assurance can provide strength and resolve to help see them through to the other side of their treatment.
Learn All That You Can
As scary as it can be to learn the truth about a particular cancer treatment through research, it can be even scarier to be surprised by these truths because you failed to do the research. That’s why it’s so important to learn all that you can about your loved one’s diagnosis and treatment so that you can provide solid information to them when they have a question. In your research, you may even discover unique items that are available to help your family member, such as custom made wigs that your family member wouldn’t have known about otherwise.
Respect Their Humanity
Although your loved one will likely have days where they need to be consoled and treated with special treatment, it’s important to work to help them keep their lifestyle as normal as possible. Most individuals don’t want to be treated like a time bomb that’s ready to explode. Instead, they just want to be shown love, respect, and encouragement to keep pushing through. Try to help them understand that you just genuinely want to spend time with them, instead of seeing them as a charity case. That can always get old fast for someone in their position.
Guard Them From Stress
Excess stress can be a major problem for a cancer patient. Instead of focusing on getting better, stressful situations cause them to feel overwhelmed and hopeless, which could lengthen the duration of their treatment in some cases. Therefore, as much as you can, try to shield your family member from the stresses of normal life. Whether the stress is financial, job-related, familial, or from some other source, do what you can to minimize this stress for the duration of your loved one’s treatment.
You can’t fill up someone else’s cup if your cup is empty. Therefore, to ensure you always have something in the tank, it’s important to seek support if you’re feeling overwhelmed. Talking with other people who are facing similar situations can be a great way to give yourself the strength you need to reach the finish line.