Cancer and Chronic Illness
If you’ve been diagnosed with cancer or another chronic illness, you’ve probably experienced intense feelings of sadness, fear, and even anger about your illness. Once treatment begins, there are other challenges to balance. Treatment side effects like pain, fatigue, and nausea may sap your strength. Perhaps you are feeling guilty about needing help from loved ones or are worried about finances while you’re not able to work. All of these are normal feelings, but they can be overwhelming and can sometimes happen on top of other stressful things in your life. It can be helpful to talk with a counselor to begin to sort out some of your difficult feelings, learn new ways of coping with the difficulties of having a difficult medical diagnosis, and renew your commitment to the things that are most important to you and help you feel more like yourself again.
Having a therapist who is experienced in working with people with cancer is extremely valuable. If your therapist is already knowledgeable about cancer treatments and side effects, then you don’t have to spend time explaining these in sessions. A therapist with experience helping people with cancer will also already have a foundational knowledge of the issues that many people with cancer face, such as family concerns, financial stress, and work issues. After all, cancer doesn’t only affect your health, it affects all facets of your life.
I have been working with people affected by cancer and other serious illnesses since 2010 and have provided therapy to those who are newly diagnosed, undergoing active treatment, entering their survivorship/maintenance phase, as well as those with terminal diagnoses. I have experience with a wide range of cancer diagnoses, including breast, colorectal, skin, pancreatic, liver, brain, and esophageal cancers. I also have experience with blood and marrow cancers including leukemias and lymphomas and have worked with those undergoing bone marrow transplantation.
Evidence shows that people with a cancer diagnosis can greatly benefit from counseling, support groups, and other forms of psychosocial help as part of their overall treatment plan. Let’s talk more about how I may be able to help you not only cope but thrive through your cancer experience.