25 Ways To Help Someone With Cancer Or Other Life Challenge

how to help someone with cancer

25 Ways To Help Someone With Cancer Or Other Life Challenge

Posted by b in BLOG, Inspiration 25 May 2010

how to help someone with cancer

My mom taught me when you see that life is getting the better of someone, help them. Don’t wait for them to ask. Many never will.

When my mother’s cancer came back and came back without mercy, I can’t tell you how often I wished and prayed to trade places with her. I would have given anything to have taken on her struggle. But I couldn’t.

And when someone you love has cancer, you realize just how powerless you are to stop it. I couldn’t fight the battle for her, but there were many things I could do to provide her with some serious ammunition.

So how can you help someone who is facing one of life’s more difficult challenges? It’s easier than you think.

25 Ways to Help Someone with Cancer or Other Life Challenge

1. PRAY:  It is of great comfort to know you are being prayed for.
2. COOK:  No matter what your cooking skills are, that meal is made with love and provides so much more than just the nourishment of the ingredients inside.
3. READ:  Read aloud the newspaper, favorite magazine, blog or book of the person too tired to do it themselves.
4. TIMEKEEPER:  Keep a calendar of appointments, treatments, due dates for bills, children’s school or sport activities etc. Send along reminders so no event is forgotten.
5. CHAUFFEUR:  Offer to drive anyone in the family anywhere they need to go.
6. CLEAN:  Household chores often at the bottom of the list of priorities when a family is in crisis. This is an easy way to help out.
7. PETSITTER:  The family pets often feel the stress of the situation too and need a little TLC. Offer to walk the dog, brush the cat, clean the fish bowl or any other pet friendly activity.
8. PAMPER:  A manicure, pedicure, blow out or make-up application can make someone feel a bit better and more polished when the stress of the situation starts to take its toll.
9. EDUCATE/ADVOCATE:  Accompany the person to their doctor’s appointments or treatments. If you have a medical background, that experience can be invaluable to someone who may not understand everything they are being told. You may also be in a position to be an advocate to the person if you feel they are being mistreated.
10. LAUGH:  The situation is serious but not every moment of every day has to be. Make them laugh.
11. ORGANIZE:  There are often piles of paper that accompany someone battling disease. If being organized is your forte, share that skill set. Purchase a file folder and sit with the person to fill out any forms, questionnaires, insurance information, medical bills etc. Then help them organize it all so everything is in one spot
12. CREATE:  Knit, sew, paint, bead, quilt etc. Making something personal just for that person is priceless.
13. LISTEN:  Allow them to be raw, open and honest with how they are feeling. It may be uncomfortable and you may not know what to say. That’s okay. Just listen.
14. MAIL:  Send a card to the person to let them know you are thinking about them.
15. COMMUNICATE:  Often times the person or their family members are having to answer the same questions over and over again to concerned family and friends. Offer to be the point of contact or set up a CaringBridge site or blog to keep everyone informed. But only communicate the information they wish to share.
16. SMILE:  Sometimes there are no words. A heartfelt smile and touch of a hand may be all that is needed in that moment.
17. BABYSIT:  Offer to take the children to the park, dinner, a movie or any other fun activity.
18. ACKNOWLEDGE:  Pretending someone isn’t struggling won’t make it go away. Acknowledge that they are going through something difficult. Simply saying you’re sorry this is happening and asking what you can do to help can go a long way.
19. SEE:  Make sure they know you still see the same wonderful person. Treat them like you normally did. They are not just a “cancer patient” now but that same person on the inside they always were.
20. LANDSCAPE:  Take care of the lawn or other yard work.
21. PLANT KEEPER:  Offer to water the plants and maybe even pot a flower or two for them to enjoy.
22. SHOP:  Offer to do the grocery shopping.
23. SHOVEL:  If you live in a colder climate, shovel/snow blow the sidewalk and driveway.
24. BE THERE: Some people are so unsure of what to do that they abandon the person during this difficult time. Find the courage necessary to be there for your friend or family member. You’ll be glad you did.
25. SHARE:  Offer to share whatever talents you have that may brighten their day. Got a great voice? Call them up and sing them a song. Are you a great baker? Whip them up their favorite dessert. Mr. Fix it? Repair any broken item around the house. Whatever your talent, share it with your friend or family member in their time of need.

Do you have additional ways to help? Please share them in the comment section!

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  • Brian October 28, 2013 at 7:34 am / Reply

    I wish I had stumbled across this post before. It makes me think of all the things I could have done more. They’re all great ideas of ways to help.

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