3 Ways To Support A Loved One During Cancer Treatment

Posted on: 9 November 2022

With nearly two million people per year diagnosed with cancer in just the United States alone, chances are high that you will have a loved one experience cancer. If you have a loved one currently going through cancer treatment, you may not be sure how to help them. Thankfully, there are practical and specific things you can do to make your loved one's life easier while they go through cancer treatment. Here are three ideas:

Offer to Bring Them to Cancer Treatment Appointments

One practical way to help is to offer to drive your loved one to their cancer treatment appointments. After chemo or radiation, they may feel too tired to drive themselves home. In addition, having company on the drive and in the waiting room at their appointments can be reassuring.

If your loved one wishes, you may even want to speak with their doctors and take notes. In some cases, someone with a cancer diagnosis may feel so overwhelmed that they struggle to remember all of the information they're given at their appointments.

Offer to Help Them At Home

In addition to offering them rides to the oncologist, consider also offering to help out at home. Cancer treatment can be both physically and emotionally exhausting so they will likely appreciate the extra help. Some ideas include paying for a housekeeper to come by once a month, helping with laundry, doing meal prep and clean-up, or mowing the lawn.

If your loved one has pets or children you may decide to offer to help out with babysitting or dog walking, especially on the days when they have treatments.

Allow Them to Open Up

While helping with practical issues is important, it's equally important to be there for them emotionally. Check-in and ask them how they're feeling. Let them talk without interrupting or judging, and reassure them that their feelings are valid. If they are struggling with anxiety or depression after their cancer diagnosis, you may want to help them find a therapist who has experience in cancer-related matters.

While offering this emotional support, be sure not to pressure your loved one. Everyone processes difficult times differently, and they may not always feel up to emotional discussions.

It's never easy to see someone you care about struggle with a cancer diagnosis. By helping them in these ways while they go through treatment, you will be showing them just how much you care.