Caring For A Loved One With Advanced Prostate Cancer
Yumhee Park | Jun 18th 2015 Nov 9th 2016
Receiving a diagnosis of prostate cancer is shocking enough. To also get information that the cancer is advanced can have a devastating effect on the relationship between you and your loved one. Being a caregiver to someone living with advanced prostate cancer, will certainly come with its fair share of hurdles, but there are ways to ease the journey.
Knowing the symptoms and treatment options as well as outcomes of the disease can help your loved one tremendously. Understanding the symptoms and side effects of treatment can help you better understand how to be the best support system for your loved one. By educating yourselves, both your loved one and you can focus on next steps and how to move forward.
Listen and communicate
Many men can have a difficult time opening up about their situation. Let them know that you are here for them if they need to talk, and let them know that you are a safe space to talk about any fears, feelings, or thoughts they may have. Listening is key, if and when they open up.
Communicate with the medical team
Due to fear or not knowing, your loved one might not know what to ask or what to demand when it comes to doctor’s visits. Do your research and go prepared to see what questions to ask and what tests or treatments to inquire about. Be your loved one’s advocate and make sure they become their own advocate, too. Establish a relationship with the medical team so trust is built, which is one less factor your loved one will be stressing about.
After doing all the supporting, you can forget to support yourself. It’s important if you are a caregiver, to find emotional support. You might feel you can’t talk to your loved one about your problems or fears due to the seriousness of their cancer. Find yourself a confidante or enroll in support groups for both you and your loved one so you both can find support outside of each other.
Have some me-time
In any relationship, quality time with yourself is important and moments of introspection are vital. Heal your mind and soul and you’ll find you have more energy to deal with the stresses that come with being a caregiver. Remember above all to be kind to yourself and to your loved one. You can get through this difficult time and treatment together.