How would you cheer up or bring back hope to a person who has cancer?

Philippines
January 22, 2007 7:45am CST
It broke my heart when the doctor told me my mom has cancer and that she's terminally ill. I cried so hard until i composed myself and slowly accepted the situation. But another difficult thing was the moment of telling her the truth about her illness.. eventually she came to know about it and its like that her whole world had gone upside down! She's always asking me if she will still have the chance to live and get better.. but i dont know what to answer her. I used to read to her bible reflections and stories about cancer patients who became "better" after treatment.. Her spirit didnt lift up until eventually she had learned to accept her condition.. She had passed away in peace. During those times when she suffers from her sickness, i really wanted to lift her spirit up.. to give her hope not only to life but to life after death. Its difficult though coz she was really depressed all the time. If you had been in my situation, what things could you do to cheer someone who has cancer? Have you experienced being in this situation? What can cancer patients do to forget about their sufferings and still get on fighting for life?
6 people like this
40 responses
• United States
22 Jan 07
My family went through this with my Grandma just a couple years ago. When we found out she had cancer she was told she had 3 to 6 months. I think she lived about 5. She had dealt with depression her whole life so we were all afraid that the cancer would make it worse. It didn't though. We had all prayed that she would have peace througout the whole time and she did. There were a couple days out of those 5 months that she got anxious and worried but a lot of it had to do with all the bajillion pills she was taking. People would go over to her house and read to her, including the Bible. My mom and I also sang to her. I made her a little orgami box then typed out little encourageing "one liners" that she could pick out of the box and read whenever she felt down. Having lots of prayer and support was critical. It was a hard 5 months for all of us but when she passed she went in peace. It helped us all, including her, to know beyond a doubt that she was going to be with her Heavenly Father and be at peace for eternity.
• Philippines
23 Jan 07
What you did with your grandma was i think very comforting and loving. Yes, i agree its very difficult to deal with cancer patients especially if he/she is a family member.Its even difficult for us who care for the patient. We also need a lot of patient and understanding in dealing with our mom because she easily gets upset and stubborn because of her depression and the "bajillion" pills she regularly takes. Thanks for your response.
@dodoguy (1294)
• Australia
22 Jan 07
Hi Livvy, That fellow Rama made some useful comments a few posts back in this thread. He's right to say that cancer is a bodily disorder - specifically, cancer results from chronic poor nutrition or environmental conditions which lead to chronic oxygen deprivation at the cellular level. A myriad of factors can cause this, and the cells' response - to dedifferentiate and revert to independent, anaerobic cellular organisms, is a natural survival mechanism for ANY cell placed in that situation. The GOOD news is that any such bodily disorder can be corrected, and the body is perfectly capable of repairing and healing itself, given the right fuel and environment. Had I been in your situation with your mother being diagnosed with cancer, I would have cheered her up quite simply by curing her. It's easily accomplished - I know this from experience. But you certainly would get no help at all from the mainstream medical establishment to do that - they can and DO go to great lengths to obstruct any genuine effort to cure someone of cancer, because that threatens their cash flow and profits. I know that's not much solace at this point in time, but it's something to take on board for future reference - DON'T accept what the mainstream medical people tell you, and DO take personal responsibility for fixing the situation - and with proper research and effort, you WILL be successful. It's really not that hard at all - cancer is actually a trivial disease, and is in the same league as scurvy. How hard is it to cure scurvy?
• United States
23 Jan 07
i dont believe any of that you say. people die from cancer by th thousands. my friend with lung cancer, lives in clean healthy way, never smoked, good food, out in the country on virgin land. comfortable and low stress, he still got cancer at a young age of 48, and the same happens to many people like him.
1 person likes this
@dodoguy (1294)
• Australia
23 Jan 07
AND I should also add that what Western people commonly regard as "good food" is generally POISON to the human metabolism. To illustrate with an analogy, the principal cause of CANCER in CATS is CANNED CAT FOOD. Hint - ever seen a lion cooking a zebra steak over a fire out on the savannah? I TOO know people who have come down with the various "incurable" cancers so common across the Western world. And I have seen those SAME people CURE THEMSELVES by CHANGING their diets, CHANGING their lifestyles and doing their own research on which HERBS are most helpful and ACTING ON IT. Meanwhile, the MILLIONS of people who put their lives into the hands of the Commercial Cancer Industry keep right on doing what they are EXPECTED to do to keep the Cancer Industry so profitable - they keep right on DYING.
1 person likes this
• Philippines
24 Jan 07
As i have said before, yes i agree that proper diet, unpolluted environment, regular exercise and minerals and vitamins intake, and freedom from emotional and mental stress contribute to our health and well-being. But its really difficult to have all these. However, without these, i think cancer cells in our body have a higher chance to trigger. So maybe what we can do is to try the best we can to at least achieve all these in order to lessen our risk of having the illness.
@inked4life (4226)
• United States
22 Jan 07
I went through the same thing with my mum (she passed away about 5 years ago). She had basically 6 months from diagnosis until her passing. During that time we just tried not to focus too much on her illness and tried to live as normal a life as possible (until it got to the point where she was so frail and sick that we couldn't). I would take her to her chemo sessions and we'd make a day of it. Go for breakfast or lunch, do a bit of shopping...just trying to brink some normalcy to a bad situation. My self and my sisters also took her to Las Vegas (it was her favorite place in the world) and we had a great week gambling, laying by the pool, going to shows...again not trying to escape her illness, just trying not to focus on it and let it take over our lives. I am truly sorry for your loss.
1 person likes this
• Philippines
22 Jan 07
Thank you. Its comforting to know that there are others who went through with the same situation as me and eventually also survived..
@Bakuhn7 (132)
• United States
22 Jan 07
agreed
1 person likes this
• Italy
22 Jan 07
cheer!
1 person likes this
• Hyderabad, India
22 Jan 07
Diane found a way to use her special talents as an artist to cheer up the lives of ... the country will also participate and bring Bottles of Hope to cancer ..
1 person likes this
• United States
23 Jan 07
who is Diane?
• Philippines
24 Jan 07
I dont know Diane but if she is someone who shares her talents or wealth in helping taking care of cancer patients, then i commend her. thank you.
@mikncas (73)
• United States
24 Jan 07
Livvy I am so sorry to hear about your mom. I understand for we are going through the same situation with my mom only her additude is I am going to fight it no matter what they tell her. The doctors told my sister and I would be lucky to still have our mom in 3 months that was almost a year ago... So if it was me knowing what a difference my moms positive additude has made I would tell her instead of worring about how little time you have left,lets enjoy all the time we have left together. As for forgetting about their illness, when given a terminal diagnosis one doesn't forget. My mom told me that when it is yourself that is diagnosed it is much easier to accept then if it was one of your loved ones, so maybe it wasn't the fear of dying that bothered her maybe it was knowing the sadness it would cause you. I hope that all goes well for you and again I amsorry for your loss.Just remember your mom is in a much better place and is now pain free...God bless you.
1 person likes this
• Philippines
24 Jan 07
I wished your mom and my mom had met before so that your mom can inspire my mom. My mom's outlook wasn't really that like your mother's. But my mom had been brave in facing her journey. Thank you and yes, you are correct when you said that mom is in a much better place and now pain free. God bless you and your mom too.
@naagar (12)
• India
23 Jan 07
hi,it had been a similar case with me when i came to know that my 5 year girl had lukemia a type of blood cancer. she had gone through 4 times chemotherapy and once bone merrow transplant at a very tender age of 5 years. had suffred a lot for a full year. she went very painful conditions of treatment but she never ever felt that that she was facing such a dreaded disease . since her age was so young, she didnot know what kind of this disease is. in your case u rightly said that it is very difficult to tell an adult if he or she has been diagnosed with this disease. i pray to lord that the soul of ur mom may rest in peace. u may kindly visit the site i made in memory of my daughter at aarti-naagar.memoryof(dot)com, also you could creat a site dedicated to your mom.
1 person likes this
• Philippines
23 Jan 07
I feel your loss. It must have been heart-wrenching for you to loose a daughter from illness. I know it even hurt that bad to see your daughter suffer. I believe God must have spared your daughter and my mom from more pain and sufferings. I believe they are in God's embrace now. Thank you for sharing your experience with me.
@not4me (1713)
• United States
23 Jan 07
Whatever you do, even if you are very religious, do not give her false hope. She will feel more comfortable with her prognosis if all of her affairs are in order and she has no doubts that someone will always be around to take care of her, especially when she can no longer care for herself. If you fill her with false hope, she might want to let get quickly when the time comes. Let her experience reality first and then use your faith in god or whatever to keep her happy.
1 person likes this
@not4me (1713)
• United States
23 Jan 07
Sorry - I meant she might *not* want to let go quickly when it is her time.
1 person likes this
@maryannemax (12170)
• Sweden
23 Jan 07
thank you for making me cry while reading your discussion (i am really a cry baby). and i am sad to know about your mother's conditon. i hope she feels better soon. my brother was diagnosed before with blood cancer better known as leukemia. he was so ill that he can't even go to school anymore. he was just at home resting. i felt like my world had gone crazy. i was so sad and depressed. we all took care of him and made him feel our love. luckily, after 10 years of treatment and care, he is somehow better now. not cured, but better. i think for you, try to be there for your mother for as long as you can. cheer her up and make her feel her worth as a mother to you. it will surely uplift her spirit more.
1 person likes this
• Philippines
24 Jan 07
Thank you also for your comment. Im sorry i didnt mean to make you cry. Thank you also for sharing your situation with me and im glad to know that im not the only one who has this kind of situation.
@SageMother (2277)
• United States
22 Jan 07
I am trying to figure out why she didn't understand her situation before you did. Try to put aside the your desire to give her hope, it is not something that is given. Focus on her pain management and treatment because that will have a greated affect on her outlook. Let HER be in charge of her afterlife. The biggest help you can be is to make sure that she is not suffering. Advocate for the strongest pain meds, find a dupport group for those who are in her circumstances. http://www.womenof.com/Articles/ai100900.asp http://www.cancercare.org/ http://www.cancerlinksusa.com/support/index.asp http://www.ustoo.com/ Try those links to get a handle on what is available for her. The next thing for you to do is to create a comfortable environment for her. What are her favorite things? What are her favorite activities? Time is of the essence and so it would be good to find those activities and adventures that she can experience, and do them!!!! YOur situation is heart wrenching I hope those links will make taking action a bit less overwhelming. She can have a quality life for the time she has left. It will be different from what others have, but she can have it.
@stephcjh (32327)
• United States
22 Jan 07
That is a very hard question to answer. I suffer from depression also and do not have an illness that I know of, but it just seems that I have become soooo depresses nothing any one says to me cheers me up. My depression stemmed from a child growing up till now. All I can say is that it really sounds like you did the very best that you could do and maybe she will rest in peace the rest of her days. Life is a dily struggle for me and it is very hard to go, but to know there is people like you out there that do care is truly a blessing itself. Best wishes.
1 person likes this
• Philippines
24 Jan 07
Thank you for your comment. Please dont go into depression, please fight it. You should be happy you are free from illness, you should be happy you are alive.
@rama_k7 (71)
• India
22 Jan 07
Dear friend, Do you know that cancer is not a disease. It is a disorder. For you should know that had it been a disease there would definitely be a cure to it. However no disorders have any cure. Since cancer is a disorder it cannot be cured. Since I have told you this much let me also tell you that the disorders come because of our different erratical habits like not eating in time, not sleeping in time and to the required level, not maintaining the required nutritional level in the body etc. If all these are maintained then the person would be lucky and would live his/her entire life successfully and satisfactorily. Though I am really sorry for your mother at least you can atleast tell others that you can avoid such a situation by properly having food supplement alongwith our daily food to avoid going to the doctor.
1 person likes this
• Philippines
22 Jan 07
Thank you for your information and i agree that proper diet, regular exercise, enough sleep and vitamins and minerals intake are the best way to prevent such illness. Also avoiding mental and emotional stress i think also can prevent the same.
• United States
24 Jan 07
let them do thing they always wonted to do and spend more time with them thats what i do and my mother and husband both have cancer its hard at first but it does get easier i have been like this since july of 2006 and i know it will be hard at times and easier at other pace yourself dont get down and dont let them give up
1 person likes this
@angelco (347)
• Philippines
24 Jan 07
if i'll be in your situation, i will talk to her everyday and i'll convince her to add more faith in God and be confident in facing this trial she experiencing now because one day you'll overcome this dilemma...we'll also pray together that God may give her long life for her to be with her family...i'll also read some books which covered the experiences of cancer patients who went through with this predicament who fights with it because of their family and loved ones :)
1 person likes this
@ichurn (611)
• Philippines
23 Jan 07
When someone has cancer, the best thing to do is to be with the person. She needs company. Right now, the thing that is in her mind is her very bad condition. So, moral support is actually what she needs. Give her words of encouragement and turn her attention about the good things about life. In this way, her focus will change and won't remember about her bad condition. I think meditation helps. I have a friend who had cancer. Actually two of them. They got cured because of some treatment. But what actually made them stronger and fight with that sickness is through meditation. In meditation, they were trained how to think properly.
• India
23 Jan 07
to bring back the hope for person having cancer i sto motivate them such by doing YOGA , some internal exercise,medittation..............
• India
23 Jan 07
It is quite a difficult situation where a close relative is involved. I had the same situation with my uncle.. his was diagnosed during the early day and all of us were expecting that he will get well soon. And u know he was so confident that he was never worried abt his illness. I hv never seen such bravery...but finally the doom day came n he left us.
1 person likes this
• India
23 Jan 07
See if a person has cancer and he/she knows that, then none can console her or bring her back to a normal rountine life. But yes you can create situations when she can forget herself and world around her and get diverted to some other thing.
1 person likes this
@jynt_aa (154)
• India
23 Jan 07
well first of all i am really sorry for your mom. i deeply console her. i had my uncle who was under similar conditions and he used to be quite depressed, so we had his birthday on those days and we decided to arrange him a surprise party and gift. that made him really happy for atleast few moments. like wise you can also do something cheerful to lighten up your mom's life. if not possible alone ask your family and friends to join you and help you. i am sure that no body in this world would ever dare to deny you. so please do not feel sad and let me know your mothers reaction to your surprise party or gift.
1 person likes this
• India
23 Jan 07
Dear Friend, Felt really sorry for u..... Well if the same thing happend wid me.... I would really act as u but yes will try my best to live the normal way i used to .... bcoz if u start staying depressed then the patient will also feel that u r depressed bcoz of her/him and that will surely demoralize the person more.... Yes in this type of situations u dont have to be extremely sorry for the person or try to show that u r trying a lot to make the patient happy as this will also make the patient feel that u r trying to take more care than u did before... Try to stay the way u stayed and yes just have a say wid the best possible treatments available... Bcoz life is much more important than the money we earn... by doing this u can show tht u are also carring and not trying to be so possesive abt the person.. And in these type of situations u should let the patient do what ever he/she feels is best for him.... Try ur best to take the patients attention away frm the dissorder/disease.... This is the only way u can fight wid the dissorder in a pyschological way....
1 person likes this
@pradesh13 (287)
• India
23 Jan 07
Counselling and Psychological support is of utmost important here. You tell her about her condition. seek help of a medical social worker so that whats her exact condition, nature of the disease, what are the treatment options available so that she understands it very well. Often there are care homes for the People. Peer Counselling ( the other person who has the cancer) will help a lot. Tell her about other deadly diseases like HIV/AIDS , OR anyother things which she has seen or heard, so as compared to that its nothing. Whatever life she has she has to live for her, try to engage her in activities she enjoys.