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As well as sharing experiences with our friendly online community, registered members are able to contact our experienced online team. The Centre is staffed during office hours and the online team aim to reply within 24 hours.

Psychologists and experts from other Maggie's Centres and partner organisations also facilitate some group and individual sessions.

Picture of Topic Friends and family


Topic Friends and family

For anyone supporting someone else with cancer

  • 156 conversations

New to all this!

Started by Anonymous on 18 August 2017 at 18:59

Hi there, I am new to this so here goes..... My bestie was diagnosed today with breast cancer, I feel like I have been knocked over... I need some guidance on how to help her... physically, mentally, emotionally. She is a very closed book at the best of times and deals with things in her own way, in her own time. But divorced recently and 2 children she will need us more now than ever. Advise greatly appriciated x

Comments (1)

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  • Picture of SusieQ
    From SusieQ  
    21 August 2017 at 12:58
    Edited on: 21 August 2017 at 13:11


    It's often underestimated how hard it is when a family member or good friend is diagnosed with cancer. It can feel like a physical blow - and yet, sometimes people feel guilty for feeling this way.

    However, this is someone you care about - and her, and your world have just been tipped upside down. She may be still in shock, processing the news herself, and at may even find she withdraws, and isnt very communicative. Everyone is different in how they deal with the unexpected.

    As she is a single parent, in effect, and has two young children...her first thoughts may be also about the children and how they'll be with all this. She may value offers of childcare support and friendship, as she has possiby got a number of months treatment to deal with.

    Telling her that you can give her the space she needs but also want to be her friend and support throughout, may be a good start. There's a book ...'What can I do to help: 75 practical ideas for families and friends from Cancer's frontline' by Deborah Hutton, which may give you some additional ideas.

    Other people reading this may have practical tips of their own too - so any thoughts from our online visitors welcome.

    As she has just heard, everything may feel very new and bewildering. She may be needing to get her head round what is going on. If she's like to join online too...she may find a blog 'How to cope with a cancer diagnosis' helpful...and it can give you pointers too.

    You'll see I've messaged you personally're welcome to ask any questions and have support for you too, as this all unfolds...

    Warm wishes



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