The feeling of helplessness can be overwhelming when a loved one is affected by cancer. It may be difficult to know exactly how to help, and your friend may not be able to communicate his or her needs. Consider this list compiled from cancer survivors and Cancer.net:

Try saying:

• I’m sorry you’re going through this.

• I care about you.

• What are you thinking about doing and how can I help?

• I am here to help you. Can I take you to treatment and stay with you?

Offer something else specific you can do.

• I don’t know what to say, but I’m thinking of you.

• I will listen anytime you need to talk.

What you can do:

• Babysit or drive your friend’s kids to school and activities.

• Bring a homemade dinner or a favorite take-out meal.

• Do household chores.

• Grocery shop, pick up prescriptions or run other errands.

• Drive your friend to appointments.

• Stay during treatment if desired and possible.

• Go for a walk together or walk your friend’s dog.

• Suggest a movie you can watch together if your friend feels like


• Bring over a treat (favorite candy or coffee drink or anything else your

friend can tolerate).

• Treat your friend the same. Keep telling your friend about your life.

• Research information about a service or program if your friend asks.

• Send funny cards, texts, poems or notes to your friend.

Relationships & Caregiving





Santa Fe New Mexican