Types of Support
Informational support – The treatment information a survivor receives from a physician.
Emotional support – A hug from a child or talking with a best friend.
Support directly related to cancer and treatment - A nutritionist designing a diet plan during treatment or recovery.
Support indirectly related to cancer and treatment – As a spouse or friend, consider taking a day off from work to spend time with a survivor.
Can support be negative?
Since a support network involves every person who is involved in supporting a survivor from the point of diagnosis through the balance of life, we can see how support could, in some situations, be negative.
When one support mechanism is negative for a survivor, it is very important that the survivor use other supporters in his or her network to compensate. For example, if marital problems develop with a spouse, it is incredibly important that the survivor look to his or her family, friends, and health professionals for the support formerly provided by the spouse.
What about formal survivorship support groups?
There are countless support groups available for cancer survivors. Some groups are general to all cancers, and some are specific to cancers. Other groups are specific to gender, age group, community background, etc. There are support groups out there for each and every survivor.
Support groups meet in-person, over the internet, on the telephone, and by email. Some groups have set group meeting times and places while others are open forums available when members are in need. Research recognized by the American Cancer Society and the National Cancer Institute suggests that all forms of support groups are helpful to cancer survivors as a group, but each cancer survivor needs to examine each format to decide what is most helpful to him or her.
Positively Pink Packages
Positively Pink Packages is a local, non-profit organization that provides vital resources to breast cancer patients free of charge. Established by a breast cancer survivor, Positively Pink takes the best information, coping tools and comfort aids and puts them all in one place. Positively Pink supplies Diagnosis Care Packages and Chemotherapy Care Packages to breast cancer patients across Central New York. These packages contain items such as cotton head turbans, satin pillowcases, DVDs, inspirational and educational books, and publications that help patients understand breast cancer, the choices they face and the resources available to help them and their families.
Learn more about resources available through Positively Pink Packages.
Cure Magazine releases a quarterly newsletter that covers a wide range of topics, all aimed at helping cancer patients learn about, understand and cope with their illness from diagnosis, through treatment, and beyond.
Read the latest issue of CURExtra.
Cancer Compass Weekly Newsletter
Cancer Compass is an online forum providing support and information to those affected by cancer.
Sign up for their weekly newsletter.