Five tips for those struggling to support a sick spouse, family member or significant other.
It can be very difficult to support someone with a terminal illness. Here are some tips to help you help someone you love through this difficult situation.
1. Learn to communicate with your doctor and loved ones. Talk with your doctors on a regular basis so you can be informed of how to help your loved one deal with his/her illness. When you're at home, get into the habit of listening to your loved one and giving him/her advice on ways that he/she can feel better.
2. Take advantage of all assistance available. Join self-help groups that teaching coping mechanisms. Support groups are also a great place to learn to manage fears and worries.
3. Take it one step at a time. Do not try to do everything at the same time. It will only make the situation more difficult. Instead, delegate some responsibilities to others.
4. Remain positive. Hope that things will get better. It is impossible to predict the future, but remaining positive and upbeat is a distraction from the fear. Also, never underestimate the power of prayer and the power of God. Many people with terminal illnesses have managed to live longer than what their doctors predicted. Incorporate God into your current situation.
5. Focus on the good things in their life. Remind your loved one of the good things that happened in his/her life. This will help the person focus on the positives instead of the illness.
If you still have trouble, seek the services of a counselor or clergyman that can lead you in the right direction. The important things is to remain hopeful and not give up.
Stan Popovich is the author of A Layman's Guide to Managing Fear Using Psychology, Christianity and Non Resistant Methods, an easy to read book that presents a general overview of techniques that are effective in managing persistent fears and anxieties. For additional information go to: http://www.managingfear.com.
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