Your mental health matters as a parent dealing with childhood cancer

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CHOC advises that these parents need to have people they can talk to.

Having a child diagnosed or treated for cancer can send one on an emotional roller coaster of uncertainty, fear, and anxiety.

Combined this with the emotional impact of the national lockdown and an already stressful situation can be made worse.

According to the CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation of South Africa, all hope is not lost.

“If you, or someone you know of, is affected by childhood cancer and in need psychosocial or practical support, please know that CHOC is here for you,” said the foundation in a statement.

Individuals may be experiencing some of the situations below that can be adding to your stress and emotions. If you are, it is recommended to speak to someone about it to “off-load and de-stress”.

  • You are already concerned for your child’s well-being and vulnerability and the increased risk of Covid-19.
  • The uncertain global and national economic situation and its impact on our personal financial circumstances.
  • The isolation you find yourself in as a family because the lockdown limits access to your normal support structures, increasing your vulnerability for mental health difficulties.
  • Children intuitively feel the stresses their parents carry, and it may be difficult for you to know how to communicate with them to alleviate their fears;
  • It is normal for these to add stress to your close relationships.
“The above are but a few of the difficulties the Covid-19 situation places families in. You do not have to carry this on your own – CHOC social workers are here for you,”

Individuals can request the support of a CHOC social worker here.

“One of our CHOC social workers will be in contact with you to see how we can provide assistance or make an appropriate referral,” said the foundation.

You can find out more about how CHOC supports children and teens with cancer, and their families here.

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