How to Tell Your Kids About Cancer



Sometimes a loved one is diagnosed with cancer, and whether the children are their own or a relative, they need to understand what is going on. It is important to teach children about such a diagnosis as surprising them with a bald head is no way to go about it. The tips below will help the process go smoothly.The first step is to understand that kids will always know more than you think they do.

They have a sense of what is going on around them, and they can feel your anxiety or fear. This makes it even more important to tell them as soon as you find out so that they don’t wonder what is going on, making them anxious, too.A child who finds out from someone else may harbor feelings of resentment towards you for not being upfront with them. If their friend or cousin lets them know that you or a loved one has cancer, they will begin to question why you didn’t tell them yourself. Be honest with your kids, and they will respect and love you in return.[adsenseyu1]

A child who understands what cancer does will be better prepared for the situation as it unfolds. Tell them the truth, even if it means you don’t know what is happening next, so that they can trust you with what you are telling them. As you learn about changes in treatment or prognosis, continue to share with them so they aren’t questioning what is going on.You should read

Once you let your child know, also explain to them what the diagnosis means. While a young child may not be able to comprehend the treatment process, they will be able to understand that Mommy will lose her hair or Uncle Bob may not feel like eating at Thanksgiving dinner. Give them an age-appropriate explanation of the symptoms they may be able to sense or see so that nothing is a surprise.Once your child knows the truth, they may end up coming up with ideas in their head of what they think is happening.


These ideas may go overboard and cause the child great anxiety. To avoid this, continue talking to your child about their thoughts and feelings on the situation so they can let you know about any fears they may have before them become a real problem.In the end, a child who has to go through hardships when they are young will be better prepared for their own hardships as an adult.

Those who face illness or death tend to create their own coping mechanisms which can carry them through tough times later on. This is a great skill to teach when you have the opportunity.Once you have explained this all to the child, you will be amazed how much better you feel. Your own anxiety will lift and your child will be able to help you through the rough times, too. Work together as a team to keep communication lines open, maintain honesty and have support in this time of need.

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