Cervical Cancer (cont.)
Support Groups and Counseling
Living with cancer presents many new challenges for a woman and for her family and friends.
- A woman will probably have many worries about how the cancer will affect her and her ability to "live a normal life," that is, to care for her family and home, to hold a job, and to continue the friendships and activities that she enjoys.
- Many people feel anxious and depressed. Some people feel angry and resentful; others feel helpless and defeated.
For most people with cancer, talking about their feelings and concerns helps.
- Friends and family members can be very supportive. They may be hesitant to offer support until they see how the woman is coping. A woman should not wait for them to bring it up. If she wants to talk about her concerns, she should let them know.
- Some people don't want to "burden" their loved ones,
or they prefer talking about their concerns with a more neutral professional.
A social worker, counselor, or member of the clergy can be helpful if a woman wants
to discuss her feelings and concerns about having cancer. A gynecologist
or oncologist should be able to recommend someone.
- Many people with cancer are helped profoundly by talking to other people who have cancer. Sharing one's concerns with others who have been through the same thing can be remarkably reassuring. Support groups for people with cancer may be available through the medical center where a woman is receiving her treatment. The American Cancer Society also has information about support groups all over the United States.
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