If you’re responsible for caring for a partner, relative or friend who is disabled or ill and are diagnosed with cancer, this may seem like an overwhelming situation. You will need time to think about how you’re going to manage to care for someone while you yourself are ill and possibly having treatment.
You’ll need to understand what treatment you need for your cancer, and how this will affect your health and ability to care for someone else in the short and long term. You should be told when your treatment can start and how long it might take. This can help you decide whether you can continue in your role of carer, with help and support, or whether other arrangements will need to be made for the person you care for.
If the person you’re caring for is mentally able to, it will help to talk through how you are both going to cope now that you have been diagnosed with cancer. If the person you care for is unable to fully understand your illness (for example, if they have dementia or learning difficulties), you may find it helpful to talk things through with someone else, such as another family member or close friend.