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Confused and sad. How can our family best support our sister?

vanz
Posts: 8
Joined: Dec 2010

Our sister (late 50's, non smoker) was diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer (non small cell) which has spread all over the place. She is weak, too nauseous to eat, extremely thin and about to start chemotherapy. How can we receive support so that we know how to best love and support her? This is all very new to us and very difficult and confusing. We have older parents who are struggling and we are hurting for them, too. They are pretty much in total denial. Does anyone have any guidance for us?

Thank you for taking the time to read my post.

hdbilly1's picture
hdbilly1
Posts: 24
Joined: Nov 2010

here you will find alot of people that have been there. there are so many nice people here to talk with and i think you will find them very supportive. you can always jump into the chat rooms and people will stop and listen to what you have to say and tell you things that have worked for them. i also have nsclc, had a lobectomy and chemo but was very fortunate that it had not spread. if there is anything that i can do to help, just let me know and if i don't have an answer, i'm sure we can find one. i wish you the best of luck and my prayers will be with you, Bill

vanz
Posts: 8
Joined: Dec 2010

Bill - Thank you for your kindness. Your words mean more than you could know. We have felt so alone and as I read your words this morning both me and my husband are moved to tears. Our other family members are understandably having a hard time, too, and go into denial mode which makes it feel lonelier. We are very happy to know there are people here that understand and offer help. We have faith in God and your response this morning is evidence of His love for us. Jan

stayingcalm's picture
stayingcalm
Posts: 656
Joined: Feb 2007

Also, if you live near enough, offer to take her to chemo and stay while she has it if you can. Offer to do various errands, clean house, pick up groceries, pick up prescriptions - everything helps :-) I wish her the best, and you, too,
stayingcalm

vanz
Posts: 8
Joined: Dec 2010

Thank you so much for taking the time to reply. We do live close by and have offered to be available. Her husband is reticent to accept any help so we have to be very sensitive. Our other family members are not local so when they come to visit it is very hard on our brother in law. We haven't known how to handle that but try to give lots of love and support to him so that he feels that there are family members caring about him, too. We have watched this diagnosis go from bad to worse and then more unexpected news from the doctor. I am happy for people like you who care. Jan

JohnBinDC's picture
JohnBinDC
Posts: 91
Joined: Nov 2010

Dear Jan, I wish you and your sister the very best. I was recently diagnosed but have more tests prior to getting started with treatment. I have a brother and sister who both had cancer; lung for my brother and breat cancer for my sister. Stayingcalm had some good tips. Being available for your sister and her family is a wonderful benefit for her. Everyone is different, but I enjoy being around positive people and sharing a joke or a good comedy. In addition to being a help when you can, maybe getting you sister to enjoy some of the things she likes would help. Take care of yourself too.

Cancer can bring on an emotional rollercoaster. I wish you the very best as you embark on this journey with your sister.

John

Dan620
Posts: 220
Joined: Dec 2009

Jan, just being there for her will mean alot. I have had a few friends and family members that avoid me and that has been one of the hardest parts of this fight with cancer. Wishing the best for your sis and family...... Dan

vanz
Posts: 8
Joined: Dec 2010

Thank you, Dan, for your reply. I'm sorry to hear you have had some friends and family avoid you. This has got to be very, very hard because times like these are when we need our friends and family.

vanz
Posts: 8
Joined: Dec 2010

John - Thank you for your reply. Yes, emotional rollercoaster is exactly what it is. I'm sorry to hear of your diagnosis. I wish you well as you begin treatment. Thanks again for writing. Jan

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