Being Diagnosed

With our focus on patient centred work – for us, the patient and their wellbeing and support of their families is critical. Whether you or someone close to you has just been diagnosed with Leukaemia; are looking to know a little more about it; desperate to learn what it’s like living with Leukaemia, we hope you’ll gain knowledge and reassurance in this section and gain some comfort from the shared experience of those who have travelled the road before.

Just Diagnosed with Leukaemia… confused?

Perhaps you’ve been presenting some common symptoms that doctors hadn’t connected with Leukaemia but suddenly they have? The migraines, bone and joint aches, dizziness, bronchial infections ………. Although you are getting honest answers from the questions you’re asking of your doctor, what do you do?

It’s scary isn’t it?

  • Your friends feel like they are walking on eggshells around you and your family appear to be more devastated than you are.
  • How can you make your family feel better about the situation? Strange though it may seem that may be one of your biggest worries
  • How can you stop your other friends avoiding you?

Of course your family will be upset, and it’s really hard to know what to say. Perhaps if you are not feeling well you might still be telling them that you are fine. And they’ll sense the situation correctly.

One reason why some of your friend s might avoid you is not out of spite, but because they feel they lack any encouraging words. The best thing to do is to tell your family and friends to treat you as normally as possible.

Tell them that you may have cancer, but you are still the same person. You might even want to tell your friends that they don’t have to say anything at all. It might be a relief for them because they might avoid you because they have no idea what to say. You will have a sense of normality with your close friends, talking to them the same way you always have.

Having said all that, it often helps to talk to a compassionate stranger who is more than familiar with the emotional challenges you are facing. Currently ELF has no direct counselling support, however we encourage you to contact one of the following organizations who have trained counselors to help you through this difficult and often confusing time.

You need to stay strong and take it one day at a time. It’s normal that you’re confused. Find something positive every day, even if it’s a little thing and think of all the people whom you have in your life who will support you no matter what.