This month you’ll find tons of articles on how to test yourself for breast cancer and what to do when you find a lump but I wanted to take a different approach and write about what you can do to help your friend or family member who discovers they have breast cancer.
Ask How You Can Help
When they first let you know that they have breast cancer give them a big hug and ask them how you can help. At first, they might not accept the help because they are used to being independent but don’t stop. As they continue on their journey they are going to need help, even if they’re too proud to admit it.
Offer Practical Support
Offer to give them practical support. Things that will make their lives a little bit easier. This might mean doing their laundry, dropping kids off at school, or doing their grocery shopping for them. You can also offer to go with them to their appointments and take notes for them. In the moment they will be getting a lot of information all at once and they’ll be overwhelmed with emotions, having someone there writing everything down and being a friendly face will be a huge help.
Take Part in Breast Cancer Fundraisers
Finally, take part in breast cancer fundraisers with or without them. If they aren’t well enough to go then go in their honor. Keep it up after they beat cancer too. Suggest you go as a team and keep going to these events. Or buy a song…yes buying the song “Even More” my Grammy nominated recording artist MAJOR. will support cancer research. Follow along using #CancerAintMyName
Offer Emotional Support
Offer to be the shoulder they cry on, the person they rant to, or anyone else they need emotional support from. Be there at their appointments, even if you’re just sitting in the waiting room so when they walk out they have a familiar face to talk to.
As they go through treatment they are going to go through a full range of emotions and depression is also a big concern. Surprise them by randomly stopping by or having flowers delivered to them. Little things that will brighten up their day and let them know you’re thinking of them. While you’re at it send them cards. Even if you know you’re going to see them in person. Getting a card in the mail when all you’re expecting are bills is a wonderful surprise.
Set Up a Meal Delivery Plan with Their Family and Friends
Get together with their closest friends and family and put together a meal delivery plan. This is especially welcome while they’re going through depression and chemo. Have everyone in the group take turns preparing meals. You can just drop them off or you can eat with them and help with the dishes afterward.
Help with Their Kids
When a parent is going through chemo a child’s life can get turned upside down and all sense of normalcy is lost. But you can help. Offer to take their kids to soccer practice or take them out to see the latest Disney movie. Take them to the park on weekends or just stop by with a tub of ice cream for no reason. Little things like this will help kids and that, in turn, will help their parents.