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To ask what to give someone who's just been diagnosed with cancer?

(28 Posts)
AldrinJustice Wed 29-Jun-16 17:55:34

If at all anything? I don't want to turn up with something generally reserved for celebrations but I feel like I shouldn't turn up at their home empty handed.

Pettywoman Wed 29-Jun-16 18:05:44

Lovely moisturiser and lip balm, natural as possible and no scent. The treatment can be harsh on the skin. Soft socks. Depends really. If s/he has only just been diagnosed you don't want anything too illness related to rub it in.

Check out

Maidupmum Wed 29-Jun-16 18:06:30

I gave an iTunes/amazon voucher so that the could download some books for their kindle or iPhone.

RuggerHug Wed 29-Jun-16 18:07:21

Time and a listening friend.

VoyageOfDad Wed 29-Jun-16 18:07:25

Love , friendship and support.

Sucksfake1 Wed 29-Jun-16 18:09:44

Not flowers. When DM was diagnosed she got more flowers then she had vases. The best thing was she had cats so I got all the bunches with Lilly's in.

Agree with pp i got her some lovely Liz Earl skincare that she still uses now.

Magazines/books for hospital trips?

VulcanWoman Wed 29-Jun-16 18:10:22

I agree with Rugger and Dad

londonrach Wed 29-Jun-16 18:13:52

Good book, magazines but mainly time and listening...maybe take some food that just needs heating up. Your friend may be in shock still. Having the diagnosis feels like the end of the world. In time it gets better. Watch on iplayer the big c and me. Listening to some of the people on them bought back what my family went through. Its random stuff like for example one of my mums friend took her ironing pile home and returned them all ironed, meals giving that just require heating up when you return from treatment and a listening ear. Wishing your friend a speedy recovery. X

KayTee87 Wed 29-Jun-16 18:14:19

When my friend was having chemo and radiotherapy a couple of us would go around once a week for 2 hours with magazines and a dvd and order a pizza if she was up for eating. I'd sometimes send her daft things in the post as I knew she was bored in the house all day so things like funny old photographs, bright pink wig (really depends on their sense of humour though - I knew she appreciated the laugh and would text me pictures of her in said wig), pair of socks one day, just because. Your time and effort are the most important gifts though.

Sunnymeg Wed 29-Jun-16 18:14:54

I second Ruggerhug's suggestion. I presume that your friend will be attending lots of appointments imminently whilst they find our what form their treatment will take. Could you offer to drive them to these? When I was having cancer treatment, we had to prioritise which appointments he would attend, in order that he had enough leave saved up to look after DS and I once the treatment started. Doubtless your friend will have to have lots of blood tests and suchlike, which are routine, could you take her to those? All the waiting around is very boring and someone to chat to certainly helped ease the wait.

londonrach Wed 29-Jun-16 18:16:33

Kay..i got my mum a puppet that barked a tune to make her laugh...its random silly stuff but you have to know the person.

Sunnymeg Wed 29-Jun-16 18:16:52

I meant which appointments DH would take time off work to attend with me. Sorry if my post didn't quite make sense!

KayTee87 Wed 29-Jun-16 18:17:56

Oh and my friend had complained about losing her eyebrows and lashes so next time I visited I brought her a really good brow kit and some fake lashes.
Her partner was very good at all the practical stuff that needing doing and I think what she wanted from us was us just to be her friends and laugh and cry together.

SemiNormal Wed 29-Jun-16 18:18:12

A really nice pair of PJs for 'off' days or hospital stays.

Archedbrowse Wed 29-Jun-16 18:22:22

An extra long charging cable for their phone and or tablet, 3meters. particularly useful for overnight hospital stays, but also handy during chemo if she wants to watch things/mumsnet.

A cooling facial spray, hospitals are usually very hot and her skin will be dry so that might give a bit of relief.

Archedbrowse Wed 29-Jun-16 18:23:26

Although having re-read your post, they may be things for later down the line, once her course of treatment has been confirmed.


pussinasda Wed 29-Jun-16 18:25:23

a hug and let her know your there if ever she wants to talk or needs some support at hospital appointments

Imaginosity Wed 29-Jun-16 18:33:36

When I was diagnosed the only thing I wanted was someone to spend time with me and to listen to my worries. I think calling over and ordering pizza if that's what your friend wants is a good idea. What I found hard was that many people assumed I didn't want to talk and they gave me space - but I was really lonely and worried and just wanted someone to pick up the phone and call me. I always remember those people who stayed on the phone for over an hour listening to me.

She might not necessarily be having chemo, I didn't, so may not need some of the things suggested above - maybe if you later find out she will be in hospital and can see she needs particular things you could get them at that stage.

KayTee87 Wed 29-Jun-16 18:46:13

semi lovely luxurious pjs is a brilliant idea!

PizzaPower Wed 29-Jun-16 19:04:06

Imaginosity, I couldn't agree more. I'm currently fighting and in the middle of yet another round of Chemo.
I'm not saying don't buy anything OP, but I would urge you to be there with an ear whenever and if ever needed, (if possible), to me that is so important.

AldrinJustice Thu 30-Jun-16 02:13:09

Oh gosh thank you all for your replies! You're all so helpful, I was stressing out so much. Didn't even think about the cream for after chemotherapy. She'll be having it soon, so I'll keep that in mind.

london thank you for your suggestion about the ironing, I think that would mean more than something bought in this case

Pizza My prayers are with you Hun xx hope you have a speedy recovery

And yes I think her husband will be able to bring her to her appointments, so she's alright for that.

There's so many suggestions thank you all so so much, much better than what I was thinking of. Will try doing quite a few of these now and hopefully will make a difference for her and her family xxx

IamtheDevilsAvocado Thu 30-Jun-16 04:47:25

I think Kay Tees suggestions are brilliant!

You could do a card with future promises in: eg
+++I'll drive you to any boring waits at the hospital and will cheer you up with silly jokes... Or find 'sleb magazines to look at

+++I promise to come around on demand with a listening ear/a funny dvd /prosecco as needed.... Depending on her sense of humour.. I promise not to give you daily mail suggestions for instant cancer cures.. Etc!

I think in awful times these sort of things really make a massive difference...

NovaArt3mis Thu 30-Jun-16 05:13:37

Depending on how close a friend she is, when my friend was diagnosed I took out a Netflix subscription with two viewers and gave her one of the logins.

She's said a few times over the past 9 months how great it has been for her while she's off work for chemo. We'd text each other and watch the same films or programmes so the next time I saw her we'd have a good blether about them.

Globetrotter100 Thu 30-Jun-16 05:26:03

I used the aforementioned notanotherbunchofflowers website last month. Excellent customer experience and I'd highly recommend them. My recipient had just started chemo.

Got this :

Very well received. Good luck op.

Piemernator Thu 30-Jun-16 09:02:11

A laugh and just be there.

I did send my BIL an online shop of his favourite foods and really nice fresh meals that could be popped in the oven because my sister was struggling emotionally and so drained looking after him.

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