We are working with one of the nurses who works on the About Cancer part of the CRUK website and they would like to add some tips for people who know someone with cancer to help them know what to say and how to be a good listener.
They are thinking of making a video/animation for the website and really want your help. All of the tips below have been sent in or gathered from speaking to people with cancer but they would really like to find out what you think too.
Let us know what you think of the following:
Tips on being a good listener
- Make eye contact but don’t stare
- Let me lead the conversation
- Try not to interrupt
- Give your full attention
- If you feel upset – you can say so, please don’t change the subject
- If I cry you don’t need to change the subject – you can say it’s ok to feel sad, it’s normal
- I don’t mind a friendly touch of a hand but sometimes I don’t want it, so if I pull away its to do with me not you so just give me a bit of space.
- I don’t want advice…… unless I ask for it
- Silences are ok – you don’t have to fill them.
What should I say to someone who has cancer?
- This must be a tough time for you.
- I’m sorry you’re going through something like this
- Do you want a lift to or from your appointments/treatment?
- It’s ok to say I don’t know what to say
- Have you seen … (film recommendations really help when you’re hanging around for appointments or just vegging on the sofa)
- I can’t imagine how you feel
- I know staying positive can be really hard, how are you really?
If you have any ideas of your own or feel any of the above really are way off the mark please do let us know I'm looking forward to hearing your thoughts