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support for a friend support for a friend

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  #1  
Unread 06-06-2003, 09:56 AM
support for a friend

I am 7 weeks post op and doing great I had Tah BSo for borderline ovarian cancer. A couple of weeks ago, a very close friend who was very supportive of me began to have trouble swallowing. To make a long story short he was diagnosed with esophageal cancer already spread to the liver. He is having weekly treatments at Dana Farber, but prognosos is poor. He is only 45 and has everything to live for. He is terribly depressed and already talking about his funeral and death preparations. I just don't know what I can do for him and how best to encourage him.

I feel so fortunate with my diagnosis. I want to do the right things. I'd appreciate any help and suggestions.
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  #2  
Unread 06-06-2003, 11:30 AM
support for a friend

Is he researching any alternative treatments? They don't work for everyone, but they have worked for many people. If he's up for it, and wants to try, you could encourage him to research some of those treatments. It might make him feel like he's taking a more active role in his own recovery. I think hearing the words "poor prognosis" would send most people into a depression -- hopefully temporarily.

I know having you care about him and show concern for him means the world. He might have trouble reaching out right now, but if you are a persistent friend and presence, I know it will mean a lot. I get to points where I don't call many people, but I have friends who are persistent about calling me, so that means a lot to me.

As you probably already know, just *doing* things for him -- rather than asking what you can do -- is something that will also be helpful. He might have trouble asking, or saying he needs help. Cook him dinner, take him to a movie, go visit, buy a present.

A friend of mine was married for 13 years to a guy she loved to bits. One day, he was dianosed with stomach cancer that had spread to his bones and lungs. So he lived only six months. She tried to make his last days the best that she could. He smoked MJ to deal with the pain. She took him beautiful places. She researched as much as she could and did what was possible. And she told me that she still considers it a great honor and privilege to have been with him at his death.

Is it Stage IV? What do the doctors say?
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