Together we will beat cancer


How to support someone close to you

24 May 2018 18:30

Having cancer is hard I know but I really do believe that it’s harder on those that care about you, that are close to you. How do I support them so they can cope with this? My attitude has always been ‘just do it’ ‘just get through it, then you’ll be ok’ but for the people I love, one in particular hasn’t coped at all. He never wanted to be at home because he couldn’t face it, he couldn’t deal with it. All I want to do is help him but I don’t know how, he says he doesn’t want to talk about it yet. All I’m doing at the moment is reminding him that I am here for him and I love him and I’ll always be by his side while he figures this out. He’s trying to sort his head out but what else can I do? To help him. I hate what this has done to him and feel like it’s all my fault. Any help guys? 

How to support someone close to you

26 May 2018 22:39 in response to Bexi

Hi Bexi, 

I'm sorry to read of the struggle that someone close to you is having coming to terms with your diagnosis. You'll find many members here who know how tough it can be to be in this position and I'm sure some of them will be along soon to offer their support and advice.

I'm including some information I've found on Macmillan's website about the emotions someone may experience when finding out someone close to them has cancer which I hope will prove useful at this time. 

I hope our members are able to help you at this difficult time and that the person close to you is able to figure things out.

Kind regards, 

Steph, Cancer Chat Moderator

How to support someone close to you

26 May 2018 23:35 in response to Bexi

Hi Bexi,

It sounds like you are doing exactly the right thing.

We all cope differently with bad news, some appear to shrug it off, some worry constantly, some want to be surrounded by people who care, some just need time on their own. I've been all of those people at one time or another. 

All we can do is our best. Sometimes giving someone some space is exactly what they need, even if we don't feel it is right. We can't fix everything and we will go crazy if we try. Step back, respect his wishes but be ready to step back in when he is ready. This is exactly what you are doing, I know, but sometimes we need someone else to state the obvious. How can any of this possibly be your fault? You and I didn't ask to get cancer, did we? 

However bad it is looking after someone who has cancer, believe me having cancer is far more difficult. I've seen this from both sides and however scared we may be of losing a loved one facing this is much harder. The hardest part can be watching our loved ones worry themselves sick over the thought of losing us, knowing we can't do much to help. Anticipatory grief is lousy.

Best wishes


How to support someone close to you

11 Sep 2018 12:34 in response to Moderator Steph

Thank you so much for replying. I’m sorry if this is a late reply I haven’t been on here for a while. Thank you for the link, I have found Macmillan so uselful and is a small support system I guess. I really hope you are feeling well.

How to support someone close to you

11 Sep 2018 12:42 in response to davek
Thank you for replying. I’m sorry it is such a late reply though. I have given him his space, and his head is still messed up. I know we didn’t ask for this but sometimes things that are happening in my life feels like a punishment for getting cancer, for not being able to carry my children which kills me a little every day. I feel like I’m to blame sometimes. I am keeping strong though and reading the replies on here I forgot how much it helps to hear from people who understand. Thank you Dave so much, I hope you are feeling good and things are going well. Thank you again