How To Support Cancer Family or Friends In Their Recovery

It is very difficult to know how to support cancer family or friends going through the trials of a cancer diagnosis and treatment.

I know from my personal experience that learning you have cancer is one of the most devastating diagnosis you will ever be unfortunate enough to hear from your doctor.

I was very fortunate that my case was diagnosed at an early Level 1 stage of cancer that was quickly treated with surgery and my tests show that I remain cancer free 20 years on.

At that point in my life I was alone and did not have anyone that I felt comfortable to discuss this with, and it was a very fearful time for me, and I do wish that I had had access to talk to someone who could support me and be an Advocate with my doctors if I had needed one.

This how to site page has been created to help you learn how to be supportive to family or friends that are dealing with cancer, so that you can be a positive part of their recovery.

Cancer will inevitably touch your life in one way or another, whether it’s as a direct diagnosis for yourself or by learning that someone you know has been given the diagnosis that they are now going to have to learn how to cope with cancer.

As a society we tend to walk through life with an “It’s not going to happen to me,” attitude in many areas.

Cancer is just one of them. So what do you do when you learn that you can no longer live in the land of denial?

How do you handle learning that someone you love is now going to face the cancer battle and all it entails?

The reality is that cancer can strike anyone, no just those who seem to be “good candidates”.

It can be you; it can be your father, your sister or your brother. It doesn’t discriminate, and it’s ugly.

In this how to site page I'm going to take you through the steps of coping with cancer and give some suggestions on what to do when someone you love is diagnosed.

We’ll talk about what to expect from your initial reaction, normal stages of behavior – both for yourself and from your loved ones, communication and accountability, coping mechanisms, healing, advocacy and much more to help you learn how to support cancer family or friends; the end goal of this page is to give you all the initial tools needed for coping when the unthinkable happens.

Part 1. After the Diagnosis

You’ve just heard the news; someone you care about has cancer. All of the initial reactions will flood over you. You’ll be anxious and scared, angry and feeling helpless.

You won’t know what to say to your loved one and, let’s face it, there’s probably not much you can initially say that will be of any real consequence.

She’s just been handed devastating news and the emotions she is feeling are the same as what you’re experiencing – with the added element that it’s happening to her.

At the beginning of this journey the very best thing you can do is to let her know you’re there, that you’ll help out wherever you can.

That might mean driving her to a doctor appointment, holding her hand while she undergoes treatment, or just lending an ear when she needs to talk.

Remember that it’s OK to talk about your feelings as well. A common theme with many cancer patients is that they often feel like they’re living with the proverbial ‘elephant in the room.’

People are afraid to talk about The Cancer and tend to act as though any mention of it if going to cause them to melt into a weeping puddle.

Talk with them about what they want from you, their expectations and needs, and then follow their wishes.

This may change over time, potentially from week to week, so make sure you leave the lines of communication open.

Don’t be afraid to be candid and ask questions but be sensitive to their emotions. Pay attention to both verbal and non-verbal cues, and steer the conversation in a different direction if things start to get too intense.

You’re going to have to consider your loved one’s personality along with the type of relationship you currently have.

Is this a person with whom you are able to talk about most anything or is this someone with whom talk about feelings and personal issues might be less common?

A lot of the literature will tell you to keep your lives as normal as possible and this is one of those areas.

Keep the status quo to some degree… however this might be a good time to bump up the communication style just a wee bit.

Be aware that the first reaction from a new cancer patient is often to cut herself off emotionally. Many people withdraw as a coping mechanism.

Alternatively, she may become very emotional, and may find herself needing your support and presence more than is typical. Both reactions are perfectly normal.

The key here is to follow the lead of cancer patient. Remember, your goal is to support her in whatever way she finds most comforting.

Part 2. How to Remain Strong

how to support cancer family

It’s going to be very important that you step-up your emotional and physical strength level if you want to really be there for them as you work out how to support cancer family or friends through to recovery.

Without sounding trite, “Be a Rock” is a great way to describe the role you may need to take at this time.

Just remember that you can show strength for your loved one in many ways.

You don’t always have to present a buck-up, emotionless, take-no-prisoners attitude.

Being a “rock” simply means remaining consistent in your behavior and support.

Cry with them, laugh with them, plan with them, whatever they need, but make sure you have your own support system in place, too. Behind the scenes it’s going to be a bumpy ride for everyone.

Being supportive does not mean you have to solve every problem, though. Sure, you want to make everything better, to give solutions to all her problems, to help wash her pain away.

But this is a point in all of your lives where you’re going to have to admit you’re powerless in a lot of ways. The solutions to the problems that are about to arise are going to be in the hands of many, many people.

Realize that while your loved one is going to need your help, you are going to need help too – and that it’s OK to ask others for help.

As much as we’d all like to believe it, we’re not superheroes. If you need a neighbor to bring in meals from time to time – ask them.

If you need a ride – ask for it. If you need a break – ask someone you trust to step-in. If you need to take some time off of work – talk to your employer about the situation.

Maintaining your own support system is only one – albeit major – element to staying strong.

This is a point where you’re going to have to dig deep inside yourself and find what makes you strong, whether it’s through prayer or a higher power, meditation, exercise, talking with others, self-empowerment.

We’ll touch upon many of these in Part 10; however from the very beginning you will need to discover where your greatest source of strength lies and start exercising those muscles. Establish consistency.

Part 3. Know What You’re Up Against & Gather Information

You will find a lot of strength in all the new knowledge you will acquire when you start to research how to support cancer family or friends.

From the minute the diagnosis is handed down start asking questions.

· What type of cancer is this?

· What stage of cancer is this?

· Where is the cancer?

· Has the cancer spread to other areas?

· Is this cancer treatable?

· If so, what is the treatment?

· What are the side effects of the treatment?

· Who do I call if I have problems? When is it appropriate to call the doctor?

· Are there other options for treatment?

· How will this treatment affect the cancer?

· Will surgery be required?

· Where will the treatments occur (logistically)?

· If the cancer isn’t treatable, what support options do we have?

· Is this cancer genetic and, if so, should other family members be tested or concerned?

· What will insurance cover?

· What financial help is available?

Once you have put a “face” to the cancer start doing the research. Get online and read, read, read.

Go to the library and read some more. Find books, not only on cancer treatment itself, but also self-help books to help support your loved one and yourself, your family and theirs.

Consider looking into some therapy groups which will help further your support system. There are typically many types of support groups available for just about any cancer scenario out there.

With a quick Google search you should be able to find ones in your area (See Part 9: Your Support Options, for more information).

What you find is going to be scary. You’re going to find stories of success and stories of tragedy.

You’re going to find people who have gone through treatment smoothly and easily and you’re going to find people whose lives have become a living hell. You will find life and you will find death.

Try to keep it all in perspective and stay as neutral as possible because you have just begun to learn how to support cancer family or friends in their treatments and their expectations of recovery. As the doctor will tell you, every person is different.

Every cancer is different. Every treatment plan is different.

All you can do is gather as much information as you can so that you can help make informed decisions later.

You will have a flood of information coming at you during all of this so don’t expect to take it all in all at once, but do try to stay organized. You might want to take notes or print out or photocopy important items.

Consider keeping it all in a binder you can take with you to appointments and have handy when you’re on the phone with insurance companies, hospitals, and other organizations.

Read all you can about the type of cancer you’re dealing with and anything that may arise as a result.

Keep an eye out for potential treatment options and possible consequences of those treatment options. Know what to do and to whom to turn when you’re faced with problems.

If your loved one is facing chemotherapy or radiation, read about the different types of chemo and the side effects that occur.

Surgery doesn’t have the same long-term side effects, but comes with its own risks. Find out what the accepted treatment is, and what to expect from them.

Remember: Knowledge is Power.

You will feel stronger – and, in effect, be stronger and cope better – when you’re well-armed with information.

The unknown is scary so try to eliminate as much of the unknown as possible.

Part 4. Legality and Advocating for the Patient

There are going to be times when your loved one needs someone to advocate for her.

If you’re a spouse or next of kin who will be responsible for talking with doctors, being there during treatment/procedures, even helping with billing or talking to the insurance companies, you’re going to need some documentation to back you up.

Make sure you and your loved one have a clear plan of how she wants things to go down. This might be a tough conversation to have, but it’s a necessary one.

And do it immediately, don’t wait. This isn’t a conversation that should be put off even for a moment.

And most certainly it should be had before ANY treatment options are undertaken.

If you’re the next of kin you must know her wishes – how she wants to be treated, how she wants her life and well-being handled in the event something goes wrong, and any living will or Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) directives, if applicable.

You may need to become her voice if she no longer has one and you need to be legally able to do so.

Part of being an advocate requires open communication, not just with your loved one but also with her care providers.

Her doctors must know her wishes, stated in a clear manner, with documents drafted by a legal professional.

This is especially important if you’re the next of kin that may not be recognized legally by the state, such as if you’re in a same-sex relationship or are “family” in name only, but not by blood.

Every applicable family member should be given copies of legal documents if they apply to them along with a copy to be kept with the family lawyer.

These documents should be easily obtained in the event a situation warrants.

Here is an example: You and your husband are gay and legally married in Vermont.

Unfortunately your union is not considered a legal marriage in the state of Nevada where you are on vacation together.

Your husband, who is undergoing cancer treatment, has collapsed and has been admitted into the ICU.

The ICU doctors are not familiar with you and do not want to allow you to participate in his treatment.

They will not allow you to make decisions and are not legally bound to do so.

However, if you have paperwork showing your legal connection and the fact you’re his Power of Attorney (POA) they must allow you to participate as the directives show.

Additionally, since you have all the paperwork from start to finish, lab results, doctor’s names, pathology reports, treatment plans – they name it – you got it – he will be able to get the care he needs without the added worry that something is missed.

Being an advocate for the cancer patient can take many different forms.

It can mean being present during treatments and, when you see something that’s alarming, or a procedure being done with which you’re unfamiliar, standing up to ask questions.

Being an advocate means you must have a voice when the patient does not and means you have to be the eyes, ears and voice for the patient first. Ask questions – A LOT of questions.

An important thing to remember about being an advocate is that you do not impose upon the privacy of your loved one.

She is the boss and has entrusted you to advocate for her. Don’t abuse that trust.

You don’t have to take on a raging bull stance – you can be a strong, effective advocate and do so in a polite yet firm manner – and you can be an advocate without stepping over the line.

Keep communicating, asking her what she’d like and need for you to do, and above all else, respect her wishes.

Speaking of wishes, one other important area where the patient needs support is regarding her final wishes.

Talking about wills, DNR orders, and funeral plans is never easy – even with a healthy person.

No one likes to face his or her own mortality, but when someone is faced with a potentially terminal diagnosis, it’s a conversation that must be had.

The reality is people die from cancer every day. People recover every day too, but you can greatly reduce the stress of everyone involved by helping your loved one put her affairs in order before undergoing any sort of treatment.

Remember, you’re not saying “you’re going to die.”

You’re simply taking one more worry away with this stage of how to support cancer family or friends to cope better and manage their legal outcomes.

Part 5. Keeping Things Organized

get organized

The mountain of paperwork that engulfs a cancer patient is overwhelming – and often completely unexpected.

There will be dozens of forms to fill out, medical history to be researched and repeated over and over again, financial statements, lists of medications, and every new health care provider on the team will want his or her own copy.

Expect to deal with a primary care physician, an oncologist, an endocrinologist, a radiologist, a chemotherapy specialist, social workers, case managers, nurse practitioners, physical therapists…and the list goes on.

Just keeping up with the paperwork can seem like a full time job.

If they’re covered by insurance you will need to work with your loved one’s doctors and their insurance billing departments. A lot.

Some insurance companies are notorious for making things difficult so it’s going to be very important that you keep everything organized.

Being able to produce a specific piece of paper when it’s needed can mean the difference between the insurance covering the cost of treatment and paying out of pocket.

Radiation treatments alone can total thousands of dollars per week, so staying organized is critical.

First, you’ll want to collect information from the doctors. When the diagnosis comes down, get it in writing.

When the treatment plan is recommended by the physician, get it in writing.

If the physician has recommended you seek a second opinion, get it in writing.

When you get the second opinion, get their recommendations in writing.

For example, say you’ve gotten the second opinion however the insurance company is rejecting the claim, citing it not necessary to see that specialist.

You will have the recommendation from the primary physician already in-hand and ready to fax to the insurance company.

Imagine how many calls – and hours – you’ve saved simply by having the necessary paperwork to back you up!

Here’s another example: The insurance company doesn’t want to pay for a specific treatment option- however you have two letters in your arsenal, one from the primary physician and one of the second physician’s opinion, and both letters recommend the same course of treatment.

Since you have this in-hand, you’ll be able to fax it off to the insurance company and get it before the review board much more quickly than if you had to wait for the letter to be generated from the office, sent to you and/or faxed to insurance.

Keep every bill, every receipt, and every letter, organized by date, type of document and by physician.

This will assist down the road when you need to advocate for procedures the insurance company may try to weasel out of paying.

Don’t let this paragraph scare you. It may be a perfectly easy insurance process all the way throughout, however you cannot bank on that – literally – so you want to be prepared just in case.

Insurance companies like to reject claims; it’s how they do things, so be prepared to work for the money.

Keeping organized while coping with cancer will get easier as you go along.

The recommendation to “keep everything” doesn’t mean you need to cart it all around to every doctor’s appointment either, but there are some items you’re going to want to make sure you have at all times.

· Patient Identification

· Insurance Card

· Medic Alert bracelet

You may also be required to show proof of a referral if you’re seeing a new doctor or getting a new procedure.

In this case, make sure you have the letter of referral from the originating physician to present to the new doctor.

Part 6. Staying Strong – Physically

There’s going to be a lot of focus on your loved one: her health, her treatment, her lifestyle and all of the changes that occur in every area cancer touches.

Admittedly, this is where most of the focus should be, but there are going to be times when you have to concentrate on yourself.

Supporting a cancer patient throughout treatment and beyond is a difficult thing to do. It’s going to hit you in areas you never dreamed, both in your physical body and in your emotional health.

You need to be prepared for what is going to come at you, while realizing that there is no way you can actually be 100% prepared.

You can do all the research, do all the reading, buck yourself up to take everything that is thrown at you but until you’re “in it”, going through it, you really won’t know what you’re up against.

The best advice you can be given is to put some practices in place that will allow your best self to shine through and support your strength goals with daily routines.

Eat Healthy and Exercise

Seems like a no-brainer, but maintaining a healthy lifestyle is one of your very best defenses at this point. When your body feels good, your physical and emotional health will fall into line as well.

Studies show that when people are under a lot of stress their bodies start to show physical damage.

It can start small with being forgetful and agitated or anxious and then move into larger, more serious symptoms such as aches and pains, diarrhea or nausea, even chest pains.

When you’re under a lot of stress you may also experience behavioral problems, like sleeping too much or too little, or using alcohol and drugs to cope.

If you are noticing a lot of physical changes or issues cropping up, it might be helpful to keep a list of what you’re eating along with how you feel (see more about journaling below).

After a few days, sit down and review what’s been going on in your body and you may start to see some patterns.You might notice that on the days you accompanied your loved one to chemo you felt nauseated.

You might see a connection between the Caesar salad you eat at the café on the corner on Wednesdays and the fact that, on Thursday night, you always have diarrhea.

This is a practice many people find very useful, and you may even continue it throughout your life.

When you’re concentrating on healthy eating and you’ve committed to writing down everything you eat during the day, chances are good you’ll re-think the 5 Ding Dongs you just pulled out of the freezer. And you’ll feel better for it.

Additionally, if you look at your food journal from a few weeks prior and have noticed a shift in your weight, it’s going to be easy to see what’s led there, whether you’re not eating enough or you’re not eating enough of the right things.

Make sure you set aside some time to exercise. Exercising the body produces endorphins which naturally make you feel better.

It doesn’t have to be strenuous exercise but even getting out and walking for 15 or 20 minutes will cause you to see a huge difference.

Be sure to talk with your physician before making any big changes in the exercise area. You want to make sure what you’re doing for your body is safe, first and foremost.

Keeping yourself accountable leads to healthy choices which leads to a healthy body and increased strength – both in body and in spirit.

That shores you up to be “The Rock” your loved one needs most.

The Cancer-Fighting Kitchen: Nourishing, Big-Flavor Recipes for Cancer Treatment and Recovery [Hardcover]The Cancer-Fighting Kitchen: Nourishing, Big-Flavor Recipes for Cancer Treatment and Recovery [Hardcover]GET DETAILS





Part 7. Staying Strong – Emotionally

The most difficult part of this journey is the emotional one – learning how to cope.

You’re going to learn more about yourself in the upcoming months than you probably have in years past.

Even if your support role does not have a largely physical aspect to it (such as running to doctor’s appointments and physically being present all the time) you still have to deal with the emotional toll this is going to take.

It’s a good idea to immediately establish some patterns and practices to help support yourself emotionally.

There’s a lot going on in your life, so don’t beat yourself up if you’re not able to do everything.

But take a look at these tools and see which ones you might find most helpful.

Journaling and Counseling and Support Groups

It’s going to be very important that you stay focused on your own personal health. Keep logs of how you feel, both physically and emotionally.

If you don’t currently keep a journal this might be a good time to start.

You don’t have to be a prolific writer to keep a journal but simply writing things down has been proven to alleviate stress.

When you get up in the morning or before going to bed at night, take a few minutes to write a few sentences, just to start.

Try to do this at the same time every day so you get into the habit.

Ask yourself, “How do I feel?” or “What happened today?”

Ask yourself if there’s anything in your body that feels different – or even that just doesn’t feel quite right.

If your back is aching or you have a headache, write it down. Also note the days you feel good.

If it’s a day where you’ve had tons of energy and a positive attitude, write it down.

A lot of people who care for cancer victims find a support group or therapist to be extremely helpful in reducing stress and staying emotionally stable.

Simply being able to talk with others who are going through the same things can keep you from feeling so alone, plus, many of them will have already found ways to deal with the issues you’re just now facing.

Their advice and support can be a huge asset.

You can find support groups locally or online.

If you are in need of a therapist, your family doctor will be able to refer you to one.

Part 8. How Do I Deal with all the Thoughts and Emotions?

emotional healt

There’s a lot coming at you all at once when you care for someone with cancer.

It’s so very easy to run and hide, to live in denial of what is going on all around you.

It’s so very easy to redirect your thought patterns when there’s something creeping in you don’t want to think about.

What if, in your mind, you’re worried your loved one is going to die?

Your immediate response is to shove that down, to reassure yourself that they are not going to die and move on.

Our emotionally self-protective instincts will kick-in when you start to think something that’s unpleasant.

What if you feel resentful because they got sick or because you have had to change your whole life to fit this new pattern cancer has caused?

You’re going to beat yourself up about feeling that way, chances are, and then you’re going to squash it down and repress those feelings. Again, a natural response.

The thing is, denying the natural thoughts that creep into your head is eventually going to have negative consequences.

Those thoughts and worries will come out in some way eventually, whether it’s lashing out at your family, physical manifestation in your body or forgetting to turn-in that big project at work… or eating five frozen Ding Dong’s.

By allowing your thoughts to come out in a safe space you will counter-act some of the stress and strength-zapping consequences.

Throughout it all, remember that you’re never going to have it “right” all the time.

You’re going to fall apart. You’re going to do things wrong. You’re going to say the wrong things and not always know how to say the right ones.

You’re human and fallible. It’s OK when that happens. Brush it off and move on.

Counseling

Your journal is going to be a huge help in this arena but it’s not enough.

If you don’t currently talk with someone, such as a therapist or counselor, this is as good a time as any to start.

While your journal is a safe space it also doesn’t respond to you.

Let’s face it, sometimes that can be a good thing but you might find you need someone who is trained in dealing with the emotions and stress a diagnosis like cancer can bring.

You’re going to need coping skills and a safe space to vent, to cry, to laugh, to worry.

Even if you’ve never talked with a therapist prior to this time, give it a try.

Consult with your insurance company to see what’s available to you.

Many have limits on the length of treatment or the type of therapist you can see without a referral (psychologist vs. psychiatrist, for example), but even one visit can help you learn some techniques on how to deal with stress, how to cope and how to recognize when your body/mind is trying to tell you something.

You can talk with your loved one’s primary physician or their oncologist if you’re unsure where to find a therapist or if you’re looking for one who specializes in cancer.

They will likely have many counseling referral options for both you and your loved one.

Often times oncology offices are all-inclusive, offering these types of services alongside the treatment of the patient.

Go into therapy with an open mind and heart.

Be honest, open and communicative to allow yourself to cope.

Part 9. Your Support Options

You’re going to be an amazing source of support for your loved one but you also need to concentrate on the practices that are going to feed your own coping mechanisms and keep you emotionally stable and healthy.

As much as we’d like to believe it, we’re not wells of boundless energy that can be tapped without replenishment.

You’re going to need to be honest with yourself – and your loved one – about your own needs and then take steps to make sure you’re supported.

Support Groups and Friends

Consider a support group or even just call upon a friend who has been where you are.

As we said in the introduction, cancer has touched most everyone’s life in one way or another so even if you don’t have direct contact with a person who has been in your shoes, it is highly likely an acquaintance will know someone who has.

When in times of crisis or need you’re going to find that people will be there to help. In general, the human race can be very supportive and will very readily step up to bat when needed.

You’re going to find out who your friends are – and will find that people will surprise you.

Make use of your contacts at the physician’s office and ask them if they know of any support groups.

You need to be around people who have been where you are/where you’re going, who can offer first-hand knowledge, support and encouragement.

While we like to think of ourselves as being very resourceful you’re embarking upon a journey into unknown territory.

Making use of the experience of the travelers before you will likely be one of your greatest resources.

Tap into Religion

If you’re a person who believes in a form of religion or a higher power make use of those beliefs.

Even if you do not believe in a form of God there is a great source of untapped power when you give yourself over to the power of prayer, whatever form that takes, even if it’s just acknowledging that there is a common source of energy everyone in the Universe shares.

The idea behind faith healing has been around for centuries, long before there was any variation of formalized medicine, using ritualistic behavior and belief in a higher power to assist throughout the healing process.

You will not find any conclusive evidence that faith will cause healing to occur.

What you will find is an overwhelming amount of information promoting the fact that giving yourself over to a higher power and the rituals you practice can help.

It will allow your stress levels to reduce, your overall sense of well-being to improve, and your anxiety levels to go down.

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Part 10. Alternative Support and Healing

Meditation

Meditation can be one of the most useful tools in your arsenal. You can use it to manage your stress levels and promote your overall well-being.

Even five or ten minutes spent meditating each day can make a world of difference in your life.

The purpose of meditating can vary from person to person, but usually those who practice have a common goal: to quiet the mind, to relax, reflect and heal.

All you really need is a quiet room and the ability to focus your energy for a few minutes.

The meditative process can open up a lot of feelings, especially if you’re really taking the time to quiet the mind and focus on your goal.

Your meditative goals can live in a lot of different things and will change as your needs change, maybe even daily.

You can meditate specifically to channel your energy toward your loved one or you can meditate just to relax or to quiet your own mind away from the stressors of the process.

If you’re unsure of how to get started try these few simple exercises:

** Focus your attention on one thing, such as your breathing, an image, a word or a sound. This is called a mantra.

** Focus your attention on being only in the moment. Forget about everything else.

** Let go of all the negativity of the day and concentrate on only calm, positive, passive feelings.

** Let go of your worries for a few moments. Quiet your mind, focus on your mantra and breathe.

If you find your day is too busy you can meditate before going to bed which is an amazing way to send yourself off into sleep.

Lay in the dark, take long, deep breaths and relax every part of your body.

If you find you’re unable to relax, try tightening/relaxing parts of your body.

  • Start with your toes – tighten, relax.
  • Move to your calves – tighten, relax. Your thighs – tighten, relax.
  • By the time you’ve reached your forehead, every muscle in your body will be relaxed.

This is a great way to relieve the pent up tension you probably don’t even realize you have.

Throughout the process, concentrate on breathing and allow your thoughts to only be on your mantra – the mantra being if you want positive thoughts, to send healing to yourself, to allow yourself to calm, etc.

You will find that, once you’re finished, your body will be much more relaxed and the stressors of the day will start to fall away.


acupuncture

Acupuncture

When thinking of needles the mind doesn’t naturally go to “relaxation” but the practice of acupuncture has been around for centuries.

Acupuncture is the ancient Chinese medicine tactic that uses needles at very specific points of the body to heal, lessen anxiety and stress and to promote overall good health.

How it works is the needle taps into the body’s natural energy flow and, in theory, finds where it’s blocked or off-path and gets it flowing the way it should be.

If you choose to seek an acupuncturist you should first speak with your physician; Chinese medicine has been using acupuncture for several thousand years as an extremely effective and very powerful health tool however it can interfere with any treatment(s) or medications you may be currently taking.

If you visit an acupuncturist they can help you with staying balanced, lessening your stress levels and increasing your overall good health.

If you choose to consult with an acupuncturist make sure you choose one who is reputable.

Your loved one’s oncologist will likely be able to refer you to one and there are many who may actually suggest the same for your loved one.

Acupuncture can be an amazing tool when integrated with a treatment plan.

Final Thoughts

We’ve talked a lot about communication. This is the heart of many of the topics that have been discussed on this page.

Communication is at the heart of most things in life really, and will be the greatest tool you have throughout your life, and in helping your loved one through this dark time in their life.

Talking with your loved one, talking with their physicians and support staff, talking with yourself, talking with those who will be supporting you – the heart of the matter is going to lie in being honest, open and communicative from beginning to end, both for yourself and them.

However you choose to cope, know that you have so many who have come before you, who have been in your shoes, who have experienced everything you’re about to go through.

Coping with cancer when someone you love is diagnosed is not a process you have to go through alone.

Use the resources you have available to you as they are boundless.

You are not alone in this experience and you will get through it.

Resources to help you:

There are many good books published about alternative medicine treatments for cancer, and also about the support that can be gained from using natural remedies to support your cancer treatments.

I have found and featured some books and resources here that you can conveniently order online and get quickly delivered to your home, or immediate download as ebooks or kindle books.

The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer [Paperback]GET DETAILS

Anticancer, A New Way of Life, New Edition [Hardcover]GET DETAILS

Outsmart Your Cancer: Alternative Non-Toxic Treatments That Work (Second Edition)With CD [Perfect Paperback]GET DETAILS

Beating Cancer with Nutrition, book with CD [Paperback]GET DETAILS

Cancer: Step Outside the Box [Paperback]GET DETAILS

Cancer: 50 Essential Things to Do: Third Edition [Paperback]GET DETAILS




Cancer-Free: Your Guide to Gentle, Non-toxic Healing (Fourth Edition) by Bill Henderson & Carlos M. Garcia, MDCancer-Free: Your Guide to Gentle, Non-toxic Healing (Fourth Edition) by Bill Henderson & Carlos M. Garcia, MDGET DETAILS

 Richardson Cancer Diet By Dr. Janet Hull A Natural Effective Cancer Diet For People With Cancer Or For The Prevention Of Cancer. Richardson Cancer Diet By Dr. Janet Hull A Natural Effective Cancer Diet For People With Cancer Or For The Prevention Of Cancer.GET DETAILS

Cancer Crash Course: What to Expect When You’ve Got CancerCancer Crash Course: What to Expect When You’ve Got CancerGET DETAILS

Winning The Fight Against Breast CancerWinning The Fight Against Breast CancerGET DETAILS





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** Please note every effort has been made to include accurate information, but further research and the advice of a physician is highly recommended before starting any of the health therapy or self help ideas listed in this report.