2 women are diagnosed with cancer during or around the time of pregnancy every day in Ireland and the UK. Even in these unprecedented times if you have any symptoms or concerns, speak to your doctor straight away.

June 15th to 21st is Cancer in Pregnancy Awareness Week and it is an opportunity to show your support to these brave mothers and families who are bringing new life into the world in a time of unimaginable stress.

If you know anyone who is struggling with a cancer diagnosis around pregnancy it can be difficult to know how to help them. Here are a few thoughts.

Get Advice

Mummy’s Star is an amazing charity who provide support to mums and their families who are affected by cancer around pregnancy. You may want to get in touch with them yourself for advice on being a support to your loved one or you could suggest that your loved one get in touch themselves for support. For more information see mummysstar.org

Follow Their Lead

Everyone deals with difficult situations differently and what works for one person may not for another. Sometimes the most helpful thing to do is just being there for them and listening. Over time they may guide you in what is most helpful for them.

Offer a Break

Don’t forget your relationship with your loved one while this is going on. Sometimes a break from reality can be the best kind of refreshing. So do what you would normally do together, be that gossiping over a coffee or a shared hobby or even just sharing some funny memes. You know them best!

Remember Their Pregnancy

With all that is going on it can be easy to forget that your loved one is expecting a new baby. But this is probably the most prominent thing on your loved one’s mind. Doing normal pregnancy related things like chatting about the bump and baby or listening to their thoughts on names and nurseries can help your loved one to enjoy their pregnancy.

Here are some links to Mummy’s Star and to the MacMillan booklet on cancer in pregnancy which might be helpful.

https://www.macmillan.org.uk/cancer-information-and-support/stories-and-media/ebooks/cancer-and-pregnancy

Do you have any experiences to share?

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