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My good friend has just been diagnosed with breast cancer. What can I do or say to help her through this?

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anónimo

Learning About Breast Cancer almost 3 years
  • Francine Williams Profile
    anónimo
    Learning About Breast Cancer
    Hello my name is Francine and I was where ur friend is now all I wanted to here was that my family/friends were goin to be there for me every step of the way !!Assure ur friend that GoD Makes no Mistakes and there's a million and one prayers goin her way!!Take care and remember to always smile that is one thing Cancer can't take from u
    almost 3 years Bandera
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      anónimo
      Learning About Breast Cancer

      How can I know when to step in vs giving her some room? I don't want to be in the way either.

      almost 3 years Bandera
    • Francine Williams Profile
      anónimo
      Learning About Breast Cancer

      I really don't know on her case but for me I just njoYed them being around every min of the day just assured me that I'm not faceing this alone!!!

      almost 3 years Bandera
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  • Ali S Profile
    anónimo
    Survivor since 2011
    Be there as often as you can. I remember it getting hard when ppl kept asking "how are you feeling?". Bc if I was honest I would have said I feel like crap, I'm scared, I feel sick, I'm afraid of dying, etc. So, get in the habit of saying: I hope you're feeling well today, or I was thinking of you today. Also, don't say "let me know if there's something I can do" bc it puts the burden back on her and it's so hard to ask for help. Instead, ask when her appointments are and plan to go with her (if she has no one else that can go), stop by (call or text first) with a meal when she's sick from chemo and clean up a little while you're there. Bring funny movies or books ('the sh*t my dad says' is hilarious--someone gave it to me), bring gossip, distractions are good. Try not to probe by asking a ton of questions all the time, but let her know you're always there to listen. She'll start to open up when she wants. If she's sad, let her be. Be comforting but don't give advice. (like empathize and say you know it must be hard and scary, but don't say things like, look for the silver linking, or try to be positive...some days, she'll just be sad and angry will need a shoulder to cry on) When she's feeling well, keep her busy! If you aren't always free, create a calendar for friends/colleagues that can cook, visit, take her out, etc. If she plans on wearing a wig, offer to go with her to pick it out before her hair falls out. Then, when it starts to fall out, offer to shave it (my friend gave me a Mohawk). When her treatments are over, months from now, keep checking in...that's a tough time emotionally, even when hair starts to grow back. Breast cancer is life changing and we still think about it even post treatment. Of course, you can't do it all, but get your friends together to help with all of this. I've truly seen who my true friends are with how they've dealt with my diagnosis. I'm young(32), and I've read and agree that breast cancer is lonely for young women bc most of our peers have no idea what it's like. If your friend is young, help her check out programs for young women with BC best wishes
    almost 3 years Comentario Bandera
  • anónimo Profile
    anónimo
    Survivor since 2006
    Greetings Francine, Diana and Ali, I would like to commend all of you for the responses that you wrote to this question.The advice is excellent. It's very difficult to explain to anyone that has not walked in our shoes what they can do to help without being offended on some days. I also have a 32 year old cousin who is currently doing her chemotherapy treatments she has 13 more rounds to do and than will begin radiation. Since I am a 5 year survivor it is easier for me to hold her hand and walk with her through her journey although we live in different states. She lives in North Carolina and I live in California. I was so blessed to have a phenomenal support group starting with my 2 adult daughters that were with me every step of my journey. They have also become breast cancer buddies to family members and caregivers of those that have been diagnosed. The one thing that I learned from my journey is that I no longer ask what can I do or if you need anything please call me. Those questions came up so many times and although I was off work only receiving 60% of my salary I never once asked or called those that asked those questions. however I was so very grateful and appreciative of those that did anything for me without asking and expecting an immediate acknowledgement. It's the simple things like sending a card, text, leaving a voicemail message, flowers giving a monetary gift, sending a gift card to a grocery store, etc that truly made me smile and get through all the rough days and to my surprise those that did all without asking were people I never expected to do any of those kind gestures. So now as I walk with my cousin and more than 20 additional ladies going through as I type this I don't ask what can I do i just do it. I am so thankful that if anyone in my family had to be diagnosed with this disease I'm glad God chose me to be the first one. Ladies I am on a mission and will forever be a Sister of Hope for those that I have been introduced to that are going through ( Seriously within one week I have 2 new buddies that were just diagnosed and have not even started their treatments) and for those that will be diagnosed that i have yet to meet . I have not missed one day of communicating with my cousin and i communicate at least 3 times a week with all the others. I expect nothing in return because I know that I was chosen to make a difference. Another cousin-in law who lives in South Carolina lost her battle on Saturday . I will be flying out of California on Thursday evening to attend her funeral on Saturday and returning back to California on Sunday. Please keep her family in prayer. To all that may read this please stay encouraged and know that God is in control of all our lives . Support, Love, NO STRESS and prayer will keep us and all our sisters and their families and friends strong and determined to keep fighting for a cure. Love and Blessings Your Sister Of Hope
    almost 3 years Comentario Bandera
  • Diana Foster Payne Profile
    anónimo
    Stage 4 Patient
    Hi, you are a very thoughtful friend! I can tell you my friends have been an absolute lifesaver for me. There are several ways you can be there for your friend. You can be there to listen to her. Offer to take her to her chemo treatments. Get a group of friends and go shopping for a wig before or when she loses her hair. Make it fun! Bring her a meal when she's feeling too bad to prepare dinner. Call or text her just to say hi or ask if there's anything she needs. Do something fun like taking her to a movie to lift her spirits. I think a lot of people are afraid that they may be imposing. I know how I felt before I became ill. Not knowing what to do or what to say. She will really appreciate all of those things and that you're there for her.
    almost 3 years Comentario Bandera

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