Friendship – A relation not defined by blood ties but from ties we make on earth during our lifetime. Undoubtedly, friends are the ones with whom we share almost everything; at times even certain secrets and thoughts which we feel uncomfortable to even share with our parents. Right from secret crushes in college to silly events in every day of our lives, a friend is someone who knows every bit of us! But a devastating situation comes in front of a dear friend. Your friend is diagnosed of a disease like cancer! – an ultimate trauma and a sure means of isolation. What soon would creep in your friendship is his/her busy schedules full of appointments, scan, treatments along with the endless thought of a nearing fate. The first thing which will come to your mind will be spending sometime with him. But, whenever you meet, it may be very difficult to understand what to say or do that will bring smile on his/her face.
‘Cancer’ the word itself is associated with feeling of despair, anxiety and isolation. We often fail to understand that cancer patients are overlooked, due to our reluctance in interacting with them and to know what’s exactly going on in their mind. This is a very crucial aspect, because diagnosis of a disease like cancer brings many changes in one’s lifestyle. Hence, a strong emotional support from their surroundings to boost their willpower coupled with moments of happiness is essential.
There are no concrete rules to support a friend who recently got diagnosed with this life threatening disease. The secret lies in, is to keep things simple, as little things which we do selflessly are the ones which leave behind great impact. First of all you need keep in your mind that, touching, hugging or shaking hands with your friend does not mean you will become next cancer victim; on other hand it will make your friend feel better. A friend will not want your sympathy but a feeling that you care. Here are few simple ways by which you can apply to support and care for your dear friend with cancer :
Make Up Your Mind First :
First of all cope up with your own emotions before visiting his/her home as you need to control all your feelings that can even make your friend weaker emotionally. Think what all things will result into few moments of laughter but at the same time be careful that it won’t hurt if he or she is no longer capable of experiencing them.
Always Ask Before You Visit :
Do not forgot to confirm is it’s right time to visit as the patient can be in hospital or home. On the top, if your friend is unwell your visit will make him uncomfortable. So, make a phone call to seek permission to visit as well as make flexible plans that can be changed if your friend needs to postpone.
Make Every Visit Memorable :
Whenever you meet, start conversation saying, “It’s good to see you” instead of commenting on physical appearance as there can be physical changes due to cancer. Talk about likes, hobbies and things which will distract your friend from thoughts of cancer. Offer him gifts such as motivational books, articles regarding people who won over cancer, etc. Show them discount offers on online shopping portals as carrying out shopping in markets and malls may not be possible for your friend due to weakness.
Put Some Practical Efforts :
Often we forget that family members of cancer victim too need support. Hence, it is essential to even boost their moral and practically helping your friend’s parents in daily tasks such as cooking, cleaning and laundry, etc. can even mean a lot! Help them with hospital formalities, booking of health check ups and chemotherapy sessions, etc., and or even drive your friend to an appointment. You can also go for walk followed by movie together with whole family.
Your Words Can Do Wonders :
- Here are examples of phrases that can be really helpful :
- I care about you.
- If you ever feel like talking, I’m here to listen.
- You can share anything with me.
- What are your plans for today, how I can be part of it.
- It will be great if you tell how can I help you in this.
In the end, you need to understand that friendship can really make a difference, Happy Friendship Day.