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There is support available to people with fatigue. You may find it helpful to speak to a counsellor, join a support group, or seek religious or spiritual advice.
If you find it difficult to cope with your fatigue or you feel anxious or depressed, you may find counselling helpful. Counsellors are trained to listen and help you talk through your feelings and find ways of dealing with them. They won’t give advice or answers, but will help you find your own answers. You may find counselling particularly helpful if you aren’t able to discuss your feelings and emotions with people close to you.
Some GPs have counsellors within their practice, or they can refer you to one. Many hospitals also have staff who are specially trained to provide emotional support and counselling. You can ask your hospital doctor or nurse what services are available and ask them to make a referral for you.
If you would like to find out more about counselling, our cancer support specialists| can tell you more, and they can also let you know about services in your area. Not all counselling services are available on the NHS, so you may need to pay for them.
Some people find it helpful to talk to other people who’ve had fatigue. You may find talking to other patients at the hospital helpful, or you could join a local support group|.
Most areas of the UK have cancer support groups. They are sometimes led by a healthcare professional. Other members of the group may be in a similar position to you.
Some people find groups helpful, and they form close relationships with other members. However, other people get embarrassed or uncomfortable when talking about personal issues with strangers. Don’t worry if groups aren’t your style.
You may want to join an internet support group or chat room. There are a number of internet groups for various cancers, where you can ‘talk’ to other people online. If you prefer, you can stay anonymous and just read other people’s emails or posts. This can be very supportive, as you can find that other people have similar thoughts, emotions and experiences. Internet groups are easy to join and leave, without any need for personal contact or explanations.
Visit our online community| to chat to people in our forums, blog your experiences, make friendships and join support groups. You can share your own thoughts and feelings, and get support from others.
Some people find comfort in religion during times when they feel anxious or depressed. You may find it helpful to talk to a local minister, hospital chaplain or other spiritual or religious adviser. Don’t be put off if you’ve never talked to one before - they are used to supporting people in times of need
Content last reviewed: 1 February 2011
Next planned review: 2013
For answers, support or just a chat, call the Macmillan Support Line free (Monday to Friday, 9am-8pm)
If you have any questions about cancer, need support or just want someone to talk to, ask Macmillan.
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© Macmillan Cancer Support 2013
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