Sources of Support
Living with a serious disease such as colorectal cancer is not easy. You may worry about caring for your family, keeping your job, or continuing daily activities. Concerns about treatments and managing side effects, hospital stays, and medical bills are also common. Doctors, nurses, and other members of your health care team can answer questions about treatment, working, or other activities. Meeting with a social worker, counselor, or member of the clergy also can be helpful if you want to talk about your feelings or concerns. Often, a social worker can suggest resources for financial aid, transportation, home care, or emotional support.
Support groups also can help. In these groups, patients or their family members meet with other patients or their families to share what they have learned about coping with the disease and the effects of treatment. Groups may offer support in person, over the telephone, or on the Internet. You may want to talk with a member of your health care team about finding a support group.
Information Specialists at 1-800-4-CANCER and at LiveHelp (https://livehelp.cancer.gov) can help you locate programs, services, and publications. Also, you may want to look at NCI's list of organizations that offer support services.
For tips on coping, you may want to read the NCI booklet Taking Time: Support for People With Cancer.