When someone is dying of cancer what do you say
Keeping vigil For many people, staying with the dying person is a way to show support and love. The millions of people forced to flee their homes in a country which was already at the very bottom of the heap.
Providing emotional support
To see our content at its best we recommend upgrading if you wish to continue using IE or using another browser such as Firefox, Safari or Google Chrome. It is a near certainty that I will expire before my children finish primary school. In October I was diagnosed with advanced colon cancer, aged Two operations and 12 cycles of chemotherapy later, I was declared cancer-free. A blissful three-month interlude of normal life concluded just before last Christmas, when I was told that the cancer was back, had spread aggressively and was now incurable. Mine is not a common story. Of the 40,odd people diagnosed with colon cancer every year, five per cent will be under But recent US studies show that young people are more likely to be diagnosed when the disease is advanced, because no one including well-meaning but negligent GPs really thinks that cancer will strike before middle age; so young people can end up with even worse survival chances than the old.
In these, my last, luminescent months or weeks, or years: The only selfies I post are ones where I am wearing a full face of very expensive make-up. Stephen Sutton, teenage cancer fundraiser, has died.
When Someone You Know Has Cancer
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DNA map of tumours could put an end to cancer death sentences. Tony Blair's former aide Kate Gross dies of cancer aged Once upon a time, I was a lady who leaned in. I founded and ran a charity which rebuilt the vital organs of state in post-conflict Africa; countries like Rwanda and Sierra Leone that were torn apart by war and are finally getting back on their feet.
And I write for you who are reading this, too, to give you advice on how to act with a family on the precipice of grief, what to say to someone who is going to die and what you can really do to help, because I have found there are few things more important and less spoken of than this situation my family finds itself in.
Since I was first diagnosed, we have been awash with love and offers of assistance. This intensified with the news that my cancer was terminal, but not straight away. No, in the first weeks after our news, there was silence from those outside our nearest and dearest. I would wonder what on earth an outsider could do to help a family about to be torn apart.
I would fear saying the wrong thing, being a blundering idiot. Once I said they were on my mind, I tried mostly to keep my mouth shut and let her talk.
Words of Comfort: What to Say When Someone Is Dying
I know that, in our conversation, I just validated how hard this is - harder than anything. Sometimes just saying "This is hard! No, you won't be "okay". No, time doesn't necessarily heal all wounds. But I'm here to support and help you in any way I can.
Just her and me, this time, with no expectations or agenda.
So, I guess just making yourself available and not trying to become a counselor to someone, but just being their friend, is what you "say" to someone who is grieving. I'm here to share your grief. When my mom passed away I don't remember what all people said to me but the one thing I do remember and I say to others because for sone reason it was comforting to me to hear these words was and is, "I am so sorry for your loss" here it is 8 yrs later and I am watching my 90 yr old father who has CHF and vascular dementia become more feable and all I can think of is I'm sorry for his loss, he is having a hard time accepting the fact that his body is wearing out, that it's getting tired and he just keeps pushing himself then doesn't understand why he struggles to breathe.
However, when you are preparing to say a final goodbye, you may be bothered by regrets about hurtful words or actions, or ways you may have disappointed the dying person. Whatever the response, you will know that you have done what you could to address a painful part of your relationship.
If you ask the person for forgiveness, you may be surprised that she or he wants your forgiveness too. Due to defensiveness, a lack of understanding, or some other reason, the person may not be ready to acknowledge the deep hurt in your relationship. You can still, however, forgive the person in your mind and heart. This involves letting go of your anger and any wish to punish the person for the hurt you experienced.
Since he was no longer able to respond, it was not possible to know the effect it had on him. However, for the woman it was an important step in freeing herself from her burden of pain and anger.
Expressing thanks for the positive ways the person has touched your life is a way of letting someone know of his or her lasting significance for you. Rabbi Harold Kushner writes: It could take your relationship to another level. When your loved one is nearing death, it is important to end each conversation in a way that will be okay if it is the last time you speak.
Just say goodbye in a way that lets the person know that he or she will always be important to you. If you are leaving for a longer time and unlikely to see the person again, your goodbye may be more emotional. Say what needs to be said. Remind the person again of what he or she means to you.
Saying goodbye in a satisfying way can prevent regrets after the person is gone. Try not to prompt an answer that confirms what you think or your hope that things could be better.
Let them know if you feel uncomfortable.
They might be feeling uncomfortable too. Accept that you or the person dying may cry or express anger. These are natural responses to a distressing situation. You could offer to pray together, but respect their wishes if this is not something they want. Keeping vigil For many people, staying with the dying person is a way to show support and love. How you can help in the final stages Wherever someone chooses to die, family and friends can provide general care and comfort in the final stages.
Comfort Apply lip balm to dry lips, and keep the mouth moist with ice cubes. Add incontinence sheets under the bed sheets. Use a vaporiser in the room. Keep the person warm with a blanket and use cushions to make them more comfortable. Help the person change positions frequently. Atmosphere Use soft lighting. Have their favourite music playing in the background to create a gentle and peaceful atmosphere. Quietly read a favourite poem, passage from a book, or spiritual or religious text.
Gentle presence Sit with the person and talk or hold their hand.
Gently massage their hands or feet with a non-alcohol based lotion. Speak gently, and occasionally remind the person of the time, place and who is with them. Making arrangements As death approaches, speak to the palliative care team about what to expect.
Rituals Ask the person whether a clergy member or other spiritual leader should be at the bedside and what rituals or ceremonies are important to perform.