Developing a personal support role
To be a support person one must be ACTIVE not PASSIVE – more then a cup of tea and pat on the shoulder with a "you'll be all right dear" is needed! There is a need to demonstrate positivist with sincerity, enthusiasm and unconditional love. Be sensitive to the patient's needs and strive to meet them.
The support person also needs to realize that because lifestyle problems are probably involved they too need self-examination and the problems are probably involved they too need self-examination and the flexibility to change where necessary, A harmonious home environment is essential.
Although it may be difficult at first, attend to areas in the personal relationship which may be unresolved. Releasing of such unfinished business can lessen the stress burden and bring about peace.
Recognize that the patient often vents fears and anger in the security of their own home. There is a need to be patient and understanding and a tower of strength.
Assist with goal setting – long. Mid-term and short-term. This can be encouraged by tapping into all available resources, then planning the appropriate action.
Work at overcoming your own fears of cancer and, in particular, of death and dying, You cannot function effectively as a support person until this is done.
It is good to be honest, express your fears and look for ways to deal with them.
Be prepared to accept your own limitations as you strive to meet the challenges. Be aware that the support person often need support too. A support group can fulfill this need.
A difficult one: check on your basic motivation in helping the patient to regain health. Sometimes we are ignorant of selfish needs we place upon those close to us. There is a need to develop an unconditional love flow and to learn how to demonstrate this.
Do as the patient does, e.g. dietary practice, meditation, positive thinking, etc. Remember this is an opportunity for you to positively improve your lifestyle as well.