Updated: Oct 4
Cancer, unfortunately, is a fairly common affliction. As a patient with cancer, you might feel that you don't want to "bother" anyone. Many times your loved ones won't know what to do to help you. Consider these ways to ask for help from a loved one who wants to be present during one of the most challenging battles of your life:
1. Ask, "Can you help me?." Then, mean it. Be definite and specific. As a person who has been diagnosed with cancer, you will need people to push you forward and help you get the daily things done. Asking for help will give you time to rest and recuperate from chemotherapy and radiation treatments.
2. Rather than ask them what they can do? Ask them precisely what you need help with. For example: "Can you pick up my kids from school on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays while I am getting chemotherapy. They can stay at the house and play with your kids until I get home.
3. Ask your loved one to cook or pick up a healthy dinner for you and your family. Providing nourishment and healthy pre-made meals while fighting cancer helps you conserve energy while receiving the essential nutrients that your body needs to keep fighting.
4. Ask your friend or family member to go with you to your treatments. One of the scariest parts of dealing with cancer is undergoing chemotherapy. It can be a 3- or 4-hour session at the cancer treatment center followed by them getting a contraption strapped on that has an I.V. connected to it that continues to deliver more medication over the next few days.
*Transporting to and from these sessions can help family members that are overloaded with the stress of dealing with the disease on a day-to-day basis. Plus, family members often must continue to work to bring money into the household and can't be available every day to transport.
5. Let your friends and family when the best time is for them to call you. Many times you will be tired and will be trying to nap and rejuvenate as much as possible. Ask them to text you first when they feel like talking.
6. Ask your friends and family to be sensitive and understanding as you are coping with cancer. You might be feeling cranky or annoyed, anxious, or depressed. The more you make them aware of how you feel, the better they can help you through these challenging times.
7. Deal appropriately with your feelings first. You might be feeling pretty devastated about the news that you have cancer. Allow yourself to cry it out.
* Lean on your journal to help you process your feelings and work to accept what's happening regarding your health. Giving yourself a day or two to adjust to the news before speaking to your friends and family will help you focus more on how you feel and help them understand what you are going through.
8. Make a consistent effort to take a positive approach. Surround yourself with positive energy. Acknowledge every little step you are taking to cope with your illness. The more positive energy your loved ones can bring to you, the better you will fare through your recovery.
Dr. Romero offers guidance on how to get your groove back after you are done with treatment. If you would like to become a member of her practice click here www.shinedpc.com/get-started.