39 answers

Advice on Children with Terminal Cancer

In the last 2 months we have found out about 2 children (one is 6 and one is 2) in our little circle of friends that have been diagnosed with terminal brain cancer. One of them is my 6 year olds best bud, and the other a friend.
My heart ACHES for them, and I don't know what to do for them. They both have a very good support group here, so I am feeling very helpless. I have offered my services to them (babysitting, or whatever...), but i still have a great desire to do something for them. I just don't know what. So if any of you have any ideas, or advice on what we can do that would be great.

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

Hey Gals THANKS for all your advice. I was able to be apart of a Carnival Benefit for my son's friend. I think they did very well raising money for the medical expenses. It turned out wonderful and the kids had a fantastic time! If anyone wants to make a donation to the family they set up a fund at Wells Fargo Branches in the boys name. If you would like to do that just send me a note and I'll tell you what name to put it under.

Featured Answers

I think one of the nicest things to do is to get them a gift certificate to get some fun family portraits done. I am a photographer and I know that many of us give discounts on session fees and/or prints for those families aflicted with cancer.

Please let me know if I can help..

C. Hill

my website is www dot clairehillphotography dot com.

More Answers

What about making/bringing dinner every Wed or helping w/laundry on Tues., something real practical that they don't have to think about and if there is anyone else who wants to help out maybe you could organize meals for other nights.

They will appreciate your thoughtfulness and won't be able to refuse when you bring it to their door. If they are spending a lot of time in the hospital, you could buy some gift cards for them so they can have money to buy food or even go to the movies, buy gas, etc.

Thoughts and prayers,
M.
Mom to 5 Wonderful Kids
www.4MyChildrenSake.com

1 mom found this helpful

I know it gets very expensive so if you can donate money or have a bakesale, carwash, bbq anything that can be a fund raiser would help. Perhaps have the chruch sponser the event or take a special offering. I dont know there financial place. Also be there for them. Just being there for them even if they dont answer the phone or respond to any e-mails. I know it helped my husband out alot when he lost his 60 yr old mom to cancer this past dec. Just having a voice message that someone is thinking and praying for him ment alot to him. I will be praying for these little ones, there parents and your family too. Also I have heard of a place that takes clothing of the passed and makes a teddy bear out of it. I saw it on Denice Richards its complicated" t.v. show. I am thinking it was Hospice that did it for them. God bless.

1 mom found this helpful

One thing I have discovered is that if you tell someone to call you and you will come help...they won't call you even if they need you.

So, when you call just plain ask them, "What night can I bring over dinner this week?" and schedule it right then on the phone. Or call in the morning and say I am free today, can I come on over and just help you out around the house...go on over and take some cleaning supplies with you. When you get there ask what room is bothering them and get to it and clean. When you go over take a plate of cut up veggies/fruit/snack foods and leave it in the fridge for quick snacking/eating. I never wanted/felt up to cooking when my mom was in the hospital.

Some of the very best times that friends helped me out was they would do a drive by...they would leave a brown paper sack of sandwiches or a couple of pies from a local bakery or a loaf or two of fresh bread wrapped up on my porch. And then call to tell me it was there and go out and grab it. Because sometimes I would be so overwhelmed that I wasn't up to visiting.

It is the little basic things of living that seem to pile up and overwhelm you when you are dealing with caring for a sick relative.

Be proactive though...they will need and treasure you as a friend.
{{{{hugs}}}}

1 mom found this helpful

My 2 1/2 yr old is in remission from Leukemia...there is a lot you can do...sometimes just being there...one of my good friends did something that was more helpful than anything...she had her kids come over and play with my son...she took me in the other room...sat me down...and just said "cry"...at first I looked at her and thought she is out of her mind...but before I knew it...I was crying...and it was so cleansing and helpful...we had cry sessions every two weeks until he was well into remission...14 months now...there is also a lot of other things...getting some groceries that they may need like laundry soap gift baskets...that always helped....the medications make the kids really sick...I went through more towels and laundry soap then I could possibly keep track of...hope this helps...I will keep in my thoughts and prayers

1 mom found this helpful

This is speaking from a Mum who has had a son pass away when he was 17 months old from brain cancer.
I know when Dylan was sick and in hospital I longed to speak about what was happening, but the most common question was "Are you ok" well I always responded with a yes because I thought I had to stay strong all of the time.
What I really wanted to do was scream and yell. I never broke down in front of people and looking back now I wish I had of as people thought I was cold hearted. But that was defence mechanism.
The best advice I can offer is to just be there for that cuppa and "chat".
If your friends break down, let them, hold them and just be there. Sometimes words all come out wrong and sympthyies are very hard to express.
If the child is well enough, how about contact the Child Cancer Foundation or equivilent there (I am in New Zealand) or the make a wish foundation and organise a Family get away where they can build some more memories. I took lots of photo's of Dylan even when he was sick as that was a part of who he was.
I have photo's of him when he came out of surgery and when he passed over, and i cherish each and every one of them.
Take footprints and handprints of the child, locks of hair. All of these things the parents will cherish.
Organise family portraits together.
Instead of babysitting, organise a dinner out for the parents or even better in their home, cook them dinner and take the children so they can just sit and relax in their own home, where there are no public boundries of having to stay strong.
Housework is another good way of helping, i could never keep on top of that while we were in the hospital as I stayed in with my son.
They are very lucky to have a support group, I struggled on my own with a 4 year old.
Being a great friend doesn't mean you need to do anything other than be there when they really need you.
And you are also going to have to think of your child and how he/she is thinking and dealing with all of this as well.
I hope this helps a little, I know they are only small things, but these are the things that will help make them memories, making video's is another good way to capture memories as well.
Take Care and anytime you wish to get in touch please do.
My thoughts and prayers are with you all.

1 mom found this helpful

Dear T.,

I am so sorry to hear about these children. It's always harder when they are so young. My suggestion would be to get a prayer chain going. The more the better. I have seen a lot of miracles in my life because of praying. I had a cousin
who was born with a hole in his heart & they said he would not make it through the night. The Elders of a church came in & prayed over him all night & the next morning the doctor could find nothing wrong with Troy. He is now in his early 40's with two sons of his own. I firmly believe in the power of prayer! Just knowing that you are there for them I'm sure is a lot of comfort. I will be praying for these children too. My best to all of you. God bless.

C.

1 mom found this helpful

My Heavenly Father,

We asked that you throw your loving arms around this child and remove anything that is not pleasing in your sight from their body. Remove the pain and restore her memory. In Jesus Name We Pray - AMEN.

A freind sent this prayer to me for my mother today, and I think you guys could use it as well.
Love,
B.

1 mom found this helpful

We have had the same or similar experience before. It will help if you can get a calendar and organize meals to be furnished by your circle of friends a couple of days a week at least. Anything to make their life as normal as can be at this stressful time. The main thing though, is PRAYERS and support. If you have several stay at home moms you can take a few moments to have meditation time together when kids are napping. Good Luck!

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