If asked, everyone would say they want to help mesothelioma patients. We all want to think of ourselves as a good person. But when it comes down to really doing something to help mesothelioma patients, many people may shy away. Mesothelioma is a malignant cancer caused by asbestos exposure. Many people may be unsure of how to offer comfort and support for those coping with this illness.
Lung cancer patient Lori Hope understood this. Following her own treatment for cancer, she developed a survey for cancer patients addressing issues they wanted their families, friends, and caregivers to understand. She crafted their responses into a book to help people communicate more effectively and respond more compassionately to those suffering from cancer. Although she died in 2012, her book Help Me Live: 20 Things People With Cancer Want You to Know is still available on Amazon. In a previous post we listed those 20 things. Now here is an additional list based on one she developed.
20 great ways to help mesothelioma patients:
- Research free services to organize help (such as Lotsa Helping Hands, Cleaning for a Reason, and GiveForward).
- Call or write, sending cards, letters, or even postcards. (Be sure to say you don’t expect a response.)
- Offer to bring them a smoothie either homemade or bought at a place like Jamba Juice.
- Visit—without expecting to be entertained.
- Listen without interrupting, judging, or having to respond.
- Treat them to lunch or tea.
- Treat them to a massage.
- Set up a prayer or silent unity group.
- Bring pets to visit.
- Do medical-related research.
- Read to them.
- Rub their feet.
- Make a list of visitor rules for them to share with others.
- Send a list of funny movies.
- Buy a gift of special shampoo at a beauty salon.
- Deliver meals (restaurant or homemade) or give food gift certificates.
- Have their house cleaned, or clean it yourself.
- Purchase gifts, such as easy-care plants that affirm or symbolize life.
- Do their laundry or pick up dry cleaning.
- Help their spouse, children, or other unpaid caregivers.