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Conquer Cancer Health News

How Cancer Affects a Family


Families always have their ups and downs, but nothing tests its strength more than a sickness. This is how I felt when I found out my aunt was diagnosed with breast cancer. It was devastating for me to hear the news, but I could not imagine how my aunt felt about it. She was especially upset because her husband had died of cancer and she believed it was the end for her as well. All that I could think of doing was helping her, and so did everyone else in the family.

Help is something we perceive as being the right thing to do, but not everyone has the same perception of it. The family rallied together to do everything possible, yet everyone approached it in a different way with the best intentions in mind of course. This led to the constant arguing within the family. Now was I not only upset about my aunt, but the additional stress surrounding the circumstances were unbearable. I wanted to do so much yet I felt so helpless. We were all so busy discussing who should do what, that no one took into account what her needs were. Throughout all this bickering we were wasting valuable time.

I began to research the type of cancer she was diagnosed with, which is breast cancer. This helped me feel a little better since I had a clearer idea of exactly what it was she had and what advances have been made in treating and curing it. I thought if I provided her with up to date information and offered her all of my moral support, it would give her positive reinforcement and strength on getting through this ordeal.

The doctor who was treating her recommended a local support group for women with breast cancer. This was the best thing that happened to her and the rest of us too. Once in awhile, she would ask someone to go with here so that we could get a first hand view of what she was really going through. It was amazing to see how many other people were facing the same obstacles, yet had such high spirits. It really opened my eyes when I attended one of her meetings. It taught me not to look at her disease as a disability. Although the people there were facing very difficult times, most of them were capable of leading normal active lives and at hard times always had someone to turn to. Talking about the disease with others in the same situation helped her to cope with her cancer as well as educate us on how to react to it.

Going to a support group allowed her to regain her positive attitude, which made us relieved that her state of mind had become tranquil once again. What made us scared in the beginning was that we did not know what was going on. After becoming educated on the disease and attending the support group, my aunt as well as the rest of us knew what to expect which made things a lot easier for all of us. Not knowing created fear and chaos. Now that we have come to terms with what has affected my aunt, we have put her before her disease and will take each day as it comes.

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