Supporting Someone You Love with a Chronic or Terminal Illness by Roz Jones

There are times when we have to step up to the plate and do some very hard things. Few things are harder than supporting someone with a chronic or terminal illness. Though difficult, it’s an honor to be a support to someone as they walk out their final life experiences. 

Supporting someone you love with a chronic or terminal illness won’t have a playbook. There isn’t a step-by-step manual listing out where to walk, what to say, and how to be. You’re going to figure things out as you go but even though there aren’t any specific rules, there are some common practices that will make things a bit more comfortable. 

 

(Original post can be found on The Caregiver Cafe => Supporting Someone You Love with a Chronic Illness)

 

Get used to being uncomfortable- The sooner you can open up to the fact things are going to be uncomfortable, the sooner you can be open to managing whatever happens. Having a “whatever it takes” attitude and letting your loved one know you are there regardless of how uncomfortable things may be will help them focus on their own needs rather than worrying about yours. 

Ask- It’s that simple. Ask how you can help, when you can help, and if you can help. Your job is to offer and their job is to allow you in or set a safe boundary to keep you on the ready if they are not up for company or assistance. 

Listen- Lots of support comes from simply being there and listening. People are do-ers and in their doing, feel like they are making a difference. Sometimes there is nothing to be done but to sit in companionship and offer your support.  

Meet people wherever they are emotionally- You can expect a wide range of emotions as your loved one comes to terms with their situation. You may see every emotion on any given day. From denial and anger to resignation or peace. Try to meet your loved one where they are and engage with them in a peaceful and loving way. 

Learn from the journey- Though we don’t all know when our time will come to die; we can be assured it is coming. Going through an end-of-life experience with someone else can help you better prepare for your own experience. Learn from them and decide for yourself what matters to you when you think about your own end-of-life needs. How you want your medical care, financial care, and family to care for you.  


Supporting someone you love with a chronic illness will bring out the best you have to offer. It is an honor and a privilege to support someone as they navigate the final days of their lives. Don’t put too much pressure on performance. Be compassionate and caring and the rest will fall into place. 

 

(Original post can be found on The Caregiver Cafe => Supporting Someone You Love with a Chronic Illness)

3 Comments Add yours

  1. Sometimes people with chronic illnesses really need someone to just listen to them. You rightly said it. They already know what their terms are with the world and just want to whatever they have and just gaze on the little joys of life. Connecting with them emotionally I feel is a little difficult because we can never understand what they are going through fully. Similarly their thoughts and emotions are not fully comprehendable. Yet we can try to be with them and do whatever little we can. It is tough for both the people but I think just staying with them and holding their hands through the journey can do a lot. Thanks for sharing this post.

    Best wishes from The Strong Traveller and have a great day.

    Do have a look at my blog whenever you find the time. There are some travel and lifestyle content which you may find interesting. Your thoughts will surely be very valuable. Stay connected. 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Great message and I cared for someone for seven years before they died. Thanks for sharing and have a great weekend.

    Liked by 2 people

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