Taking care of someone with cancer is not an easy task. In fact, it’s among the hardest tasks imaginable. Being a caregiver can become a full-time, 24/7 job that drains you both physically and mentally, but there are some ways to make this easier for you.
Let’s go over the things that you can do to help your loved one on the cancer journey:
Recognize your emotions.
You might feel helpless because you can’t help your loved one outright. You might be terrified of what the future might bring. Other times, you might feel an overwhelming sense of guilt because you think you could’ve done more for the person. You might also feel angry, feeling this isn’t fair or mourn the loss of the life that you and/or your loved had before this happened. Only when you recognize your own emotions, you can provide the needed support for the person.
You will have to do some research in order to gain a better understanding of the exact type of cancer. Ask your loved one’s MD to provide educational materials. The more you know about the illness itself, the easier it is to combat the fear of the unknown.
Keep a record of all tests, all medical history, and all medications. You can go a step further than that by scheduling appointments or, for example, ordering Nolvadex online on your own.
Follow the lead, listen and respect.
Let your loved one know that they can still “call the shots”, it will prevent them from feeling powerless and succumbing further to the illness. Always listen to what they have to say, even if you don’t have answers to their questions. Respecting the patient’s independence is also invaluable, you might want to encourage your loved one to be as self-sufficient as possible.
Cancer damages relationships, so we urge you to avoid real damage by maintaining open communication. Your loved one can (and will) handle an honest talk.
Take a break from it.
Don’t let the disease hijack your and your loved one’s entire lives. Don’t bring it up unless prompted, make sure you have time for yourself.