Educate family on how to be supportive?

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Question from windos: How I can explain to my family the way I am feeling as to the pain, fatigue, and just plain sick? I am cancer-free at this time, but over time have had a melanoma, atypical lobular hyperplasia, a basal cell carcinoma, and a papillary carcinoma. I fear these cancers can be related and my need for support may suffocate my family. I feel they think I just don't want to go out or am being lazy. Perhaps I can show them a site or papers on this topic?
Answers - Rosalind Kleban, L.C.S.W. The explanation to people around you is that the accumulation of all of these problems have a cumulative debilitating effect on a person's emotions. As much as a family can possibly understand, they're also not equipped to be able to handle the situation and the ongoing problems. In situations like this with ongoing diagnosis, it would probably be helpful for the person to seek a counselor well-grounded in working with cancer patients to help cope with their feelings and very natural fears of the future. With this kind of help, it helps take the burden off your family and perhaps will make it a little easier for them to be supportive.

The Ask-the-Expert Online Conference called Partners, Loved Ones, Caregivers: Taking Care of You featured Author Marc Silver and moderator Rosalind Kleban, L.C.S.W. answering your questions about how you can take care of your loved one and yourself during and after breast cancer treatment.

Editor's Note: This conference took place in February 2007.

The materials presented in these conferences do not necessarily reflect the views of A qualified healthcare professional should be consulted before using any therapeutic product or regimen discussed. All readers should verify all information and data before employing any therapies described here.

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