Women's Health

Tips on Being a Good Friend to Someone with Ovarian Cancer

tips being good friend in ovarian cancer

Tips on Being a Good Friend to Someone with Ovarian Cancer

When a loved one is diagnosed with ovarian cancer, it’s normal to feel overwhelmed with emotions such as sadness, anger, anxiety, and worry. Some of these feelings may come and go or they may come at the same time. They may persist throughout a loved one’s cancer treatment and long after the treatment has ended.

Wanting to be supportive when a loved one has been diagnosed with cancer comes naturally; however, it’s not always easy to know how to react.

It may be difficult to determine whether you should talk about the subject of cancer or avoid the topic altogether. Remember that your loved one may not always want to talk about cancer so let her take the lead in conversations and go from there.

Allow her to be her best self

During this difficult time, support your loved one’s thoughts and feelings. Allow her to be negative or withdrawn at times, as this is to be expected. Small gestures, such as taking her out to lunch or having a spa day together, can make a great difference. Ponder over what her average day looks like and seek out ways in which you can brighten it up. Most importantly, just be there for her. Every individual, no matter how strong they are, can benefit from having a supportive and reliable friend. She needs to know that you are still the old you and so is she—despite cancer.

Don’t change!

When it comes to a genuine friendship, it is about being there for one another and being honest with each other. Do what you have always done. Do not start acting a particular way just because your loved one has been diagnosed with ovarian cancer. Of course, certain topics may be more sensitive than others, but the most essential thing is that you do not change and become a different person around her.

If you say that you are going to do something, such as call or visit, then follow through. Having ovarian cancer can lead to unexpected changes and the last thing that your loved one needs is for you to become unexpected as well. Do not make promises that you cannot keep.

Do not take any negativity personally

Being diagnosed with ovarian cancer can be frightening and overwhelming. Symptoms may vary on a day to day basis. So, if your loved one cancels plans that you made together or she wants to be alone for the day, let her know that this is okay. Given what she is going through, learn to read the signs, be understanding, and do not take things personally.

The most meaningful thing that you can do is be there for her, through the good times and the bad. Be as supportive with her as you would for any other situation that life may bring. You both understand that great friends are hard to find, and your support will show your commitment to her and to your valuable friendship.

Here are a few ways in which you can be a good friend and show your support.