Managing the Offers of Assistance During Cancer Treatment

How can you manage the offers of assistance during cancer treatment?

4663549751Too much help? It may seem like an odd problem to have, but it can happen. Robin McGee, author of “The Cancer Olympics,” has been through it before. In this video she explains how to manage all the offers of assistance during cancer treatment.

To learn more about life after a colon cancer diagnosis watch “Advice from Colon Cancer Survivor Marc Rowley.”

Video Transcripts

Robin McGee: It is really hard when you are first diagnosed, everybody and their dog phones you and you spend hours on the phone, hours on the e-mail reporting to people who are concerned. What I am going to strongly recommend people do is that they find either a spokesperson who speaks for them or to use some of the online methods that make communication with your supporters easier, so for example the use of a blog, I used as described here in my book, The Cancer Olympics, I used an online blog called Lotsa Helping Hands and this was a really great blog because it is sort of like a bridal registry of chores, so as you know, when you are diagnosed with cancer, people come up and they say, what can I do, what can I do to help you and at that time, you are so stunned by what is happened, you don’t even know what to say and once they walk away, you think, oh I need someone to mow the lawn and drive my kid to that event and it is hard for us to ask for help.

The nice thing about a website like Lotsa Helping Hands is what you do is you type in what the chore is, I need to drive, I need help with my bushes, I need someone to take granny to her appointment. People can see them and sign up for them and that way people, when people say to you, what can I do to help you, you say go to the website, go to my Lotsa blog, there is some help, if you can really want to help me, these things you can do and it ranges all the way from gardening, through to childcare, through to driving you for hours to appointments. Was hen I tell how on my Lotsa blog, I put in that I needed a drive to radiation which where I lived geographically is a two-hour drive and I had eight volunteers to drive me within 10 minutes, so there are people out there who really, really want to help you, they want to support you, it is part of their own salvation to help you, they want that and you know it can be difficult to accept help especially if you have been sort of a strong independent person, it really matters to people to be able to reach out to you and methods like that and use of an online blog or way of soliciting your, the help you need and matching that against the help they are willing to give, that can be a great thing to connect you to your family and to your community.

Robin McGee
Dr. Robin McGee is a Registered Clinical Psychologist, mother, wife, educator and friend. Living in Port Williams, Nova Scotia, she has been a dedicated clinician in health and education settings for over 25 years. Since entering remission, she has been very active in patient advocacy, serving as the patient representative on several provincial and national initiatives aimed at improving standards of cancer care.‏ Her book "The Cancer Olympics" details her journey with colon cancer, her search for justice with the College of Physicians, and her advocacy for fair drug policy with her government.


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