When a close friend or family member is diagnosed with cancer, it can be hard to know how to help. Below are some tips on how to turn your love and support into action.
One of the best ways you can help someone you love is to make sure they’re getting the right treatment. You can provide empathy and guidance by helping your close friend or family member get a second opinion and understand all of their treatment options.
At this vulnerable time, it can be difficult to know what to say. Thankfully, this time is better spent listening to your loved one. You can’t expedite treatment or change the seriousness of the situation. You can facilitate healing through emotional support.
Instead of offering a general hand for help, focus on tangible things you can do. Help with housework, errands, childcare, meal prep and other activities can make a big difference for someone going through treatment. Websites like MealTrain and Lotsa Helping Hands offer practical tools and great ideas for creating a care community.
Above all else, most people with cancer want to preserve a sense of normalcy. Although it’s natural to want to take over tasks, listen to your loved one’s wishes to do “normal activities” and help only if they wish. When people feel capable and able to manage their regular responsibilities, it can offset the feeling that a cancer diagnosis is overtaking their life.
There are many opportunities to give on behalf of someone you love. Here are two that help patients of The Ghosh Center: