When you or a close relative is diagnosed with cancer, it can be devastating. Read on to find out how professional counselling could help you and your family in this difficult situation.
Cancer diagnosis – how can counselling help?
Although everyone's reaction to a cancer diagnosis is slightly different, there are some common denominators that can affect sufferers and their families. A counsellor's role is not to try to tell you how you should feel, but to listen to your concerns and thoughts and talk them through with you.
Talking things through with an experienced but impartial third party can be a very good way of helping you to come to terms with the diagnosis. A good counsellor can help you to see things from a different perspective and teach you how to cope with the various feelings that you may be experiencing.
Members of your family and close friends could also benefit greatly from chatting about your diagnosis with a counsellor. For example, a spouse might find it difficult to talk to their partner about how they will deal with their loved one's impending death, but they may find it much easier to talk about this with a counsellor.
A counsellor can often help you to approach things from a different point of view and can give you the opportunity to discuss matters that you don't feel comfortable talking about with your family.
How should you feel about your diagnosis?
Everyone reacts differently to a diagnosis of cancer. Some people may feel angry or out of control; others are afraid of the treatment they will undergo or of dying if their condition is terminal. Stress is also a common emotion that cancer sufferers feel and this can be exacerbated by the physical reaction to drug therapy or the condition itself.
A cancer diagnosis can be particularly devastating when it comes to family relationships. It can be extremely difficult to figure out how to discuss your condition and your impending death can quickly become the 'elephant in the room'. Counselling sessions for your whole family can be really helpful here, as they enable you to talk about this difficult issue through an unbiased intermediary.
A good counsellor can also give you advice and recommendations about who to talk to when it comes to potential financial issues such as paying the mortgage if you can't work.
Counselling can be a really good way of helping you and your family to deal with a diagnosis of cancer. If you think that counselling would help you, ask your doctor or medical team for a referral to a good counselling service in your area.Share
27 July 2016
I am getting married this year to a great guy. I really want this to work out and one of the things that worry me is that I don't want the issues from my family to affect our relationship. My parents had a really traumatic relationship as my father is a heavy drinker and was often unfaithful. I often have trouble trusting my partner and I know that the reason is due to my family background and not anything that he has done. I've been going to counselling to work through my issues and I hope that you will join me on my journey.