Help and advice for relatives and carers

It is not always easy for carers or relatives to know how to react when their patient or loved one is diagnosed with cancer.

It can be difficult to live with a person who suffers with any chronic illness, but cancer usually evokes a feeling of fear.

Sometimes, people become so frightened that they distance themselves, and subsequently reject the patient as this is the only way they can deal with the diagnosis.

Others stop "living" their own personal life, to care and provide constant help for their close relative.

If you are a carer or relative, there are many forms of support available through specialists, GPs and cancer support networks.These will aid by, for example:
  • Making you feel optimistic and better prepared to help your relative.
  • Avoiding you feeling guilty and encourage you to ask for help if you require.
  • Helping you have moments of rest and relaxation.

An example of a source of support is Europa Donna.

This is an association with branches all over Europe which brings together women with past or present breast cancer and regularly organises meetings with patients and carers to help to support each other.

For further information:

For other information for carers and patients, please refer to the page "Where to find help and support".
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