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what helped most

how2help
Posts: 1
Joined: Jun 2008

My brother is looking at stage 3-4 colon cancer diagnosis after surgery this week, I woudl appreciate knowing stories of what were the most emotionally supportive experiences for people so i can keep them in mind as I try my best to be supportive. I don't think I need the "don'ts", I am really lookign to compile my own list of "do's" Thanks a lot.

Anonymous user (not verified)

DO show up (if you live near enough to your brother to do so)....don't just say 'call me if you need anything'.
DO find out what troubles your brother the most about his situation (finances?, transportation?, kids?)...and make every attempt to 'stand in the gap' at that point so to ease his mind in that one area at least.
DO join with your brother in whatever ways you can to keep his days as normal as possible...that means no coddling, let him do as much as he can and encourage him to keep going.
DO take good care of yourself...so that you can be available to him. If this turns into a long process, you don't want to experience 'burn out' in the middle of it.
DO encourage him to take advantage of resources for maintaining good mental and emotional health as well as physical health.
Gob Bless.

StacyGleaso's picture
StacyGleaso
Posts: 1248
Joined: Mar 2003

As a survivor of over 6 yrs from Stage 4 Colon Cancer with Liver mets, I can tell you that everything Zahalene said is right. Trying to keep things as "normal" as possible is HUGE. I was lucky enough to have had no side effects from chemo or radiation, so I was a pretty easy patient. My very large family lives nearby, so it was cool to have visitors when I was home to hang out with. It's not always important to just talk about cancer, but talk about everything and anything you talked about before.

Stay tough, things will get back on track for all of you!

Stacy

winthefight's picture
winthefight
Posts: 161
Joined: Dec 2007

Also ask the drs questions that you may have. Sometimes, we the patients may not remember to ask or write down the questions to ask. Please read pages 247-248 of the book (page may vary by edition): Chicken Soup for the Survivor's soul. There is a list of "dos".

terato's picture
terato
Posts: 383
Joined: Apr 2002

Help your brother compose a letter to his doctor sent prior to each visit with all the possible questions the both of you may have and bring a copy of that letter to the visit. Your brother's doctor will know in advance what answers he should have ready and you and your brother will have a list of the questions he is expecting.

Love and Courage!

Rick

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