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What Are You Supposed To Do When You DON'T Have a Support System?

Anyone who reads articles on our site here at Blood-Cancer.com probably sees a lot of recurring themes. One is how important support is for a cancer patient. But what are you supposed to do when you just DON’T have a support system?

Finding a support network

One option is to go out and look for one. Over the years, I've gone out into the world and, whether by accident or on purpose, have found my “found family.” They were vital in my healing process. I know not everyone can go out (we’ll get to that point), but for those who can, here are some places to look.

  • The Library- Boy oh boy are libraries useful! Not only for research but also for community outreach! There are so many programs and events that libraries tend to host. They are usually free, and you can meet so many different people from different walks of life. Plus free books.
  • Church- While not for everyone, churches are great for support. Church programs are put in place to help the community. Most congregations are happy to get to know and listen to new people. That’s the whole point. Some churches have weekly classes you might look into. Food pantries, speaking to a pastor or clergy, food trains, and prayers of healing, if you are open to that, are just a few examples of things you can find helpful at a church or religious community. I remember my church (Presbyterian) would have an ice cream social, auction, and potlucks every year. Everyone from the community was invited, and it was always a good time.
  • Virtual Reality- I’ve spoken about this before, but I think it applies again. VR is a cool way to get to know people and have fun at the same time. You can do it right from your living room as well. You don’t need a fancy headset, either. There are many options on a standard computer or laptop. Webcams help with this, too! I found a pretty good one for about $30 on Amazon that I use. Sometimes, seeing another person in real-time can make us feel less lonely than just hearing a voice.
  • Online groups- I’m obviously biased toward our page (haha), but there are so many community groups and message boards you can reach out to for support. So many people have similar experiences and want to share them with another person, and have no idea how many people are going through the same thing! It’s a great icebreaker. “Hey, I have cancer.” “Oh, you too?” “Yeah, what’s your favorite flavor of ice cream?”
  • Consider a pet- Pets are so rewarding, though admittedly a lot of work. But they will love you like no other and help make the bad days a bit more bearable.

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What if you just haven’t been able to find anyone?

While no one wants this, it is a real problem people go through. I see it again and again on our Facebook page. I think in cases like these, it can help to learn to enjoy your own company. Do all of the things that make you happy. Try and fail at new hobbies. Start watching that long list of movies you’ve been meaning to watch. Make yourself a cake!

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For now, at least, remember this isn’t a forever problem. Right now is hard, and it’s okay to not be okay. Stress is a part of life. But I promise there are people out there who will be happy to call you a friend and be a shoulder you can lean on.

In the meantime, until you find them, this community is here for you and happy to get to know you. :)

Warm wishes, Katelynn

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The Blood-Cancer.com team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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