Sonali Bendre's Recent Post With Her Son May Leave You In Tears! Here's How You Can Talk To Your Loved Ones About Cancer
Recently, Sonali Bendre shared a picture on Instagram with her son talking about how she broke the news of her cancer diagnosis to him. Here's what Psychiatrist Dr Sanjay Chugh has to say about talking to loved ones about cancer diagnosis.
Sonali Bendre recently revealed how she broke the news of her cancer diagnosis to her son
- Sonali Bendre shares how she told her son about her cancer diagnosis
- Accepting the diagnosis of cancer might take you some time
- Family and friends can support you emotionally and practically
Ever wondered what it is like to hear from your loved one that they have been diagnosed with cancer? The amount of emotional distress caused by this statement can break you down. But this is when you need to gather strength and support the one in pain. Sonali Bendre's cancer diagnosis too has been quite shocking and distressing for her family, friends, and fans. But that did not stop the actress from fighting the disease upfront. Nevertheless, the one challenge she faced was to tell her son about her disease. Recently, the actress shared a picture on Instagram with her son talking about how she broke the news to her son and how maturely he handled it. The little boy, who could have broken down by the shocking diagnosis, became a source of strength and positivity for his mother. While in our world we believe in protecting our children from such devastating news, the actress strongly believes in making children a part of it. "In our effort to protect them from the pain and realities of life, we might end up doing the opposite," writes Sonali in her post.
From the moment he was born 12 years, 11 months and 8 days ago, my amazing @rockbehl took ownership of my heart. From then on, his happiness and wellbeing have been the centre of anything @goldiebehl and I ever did. And so, when the Big C reared its ugly head, our biggest dilemma was what and how we were going to tell him. As much as we wanted to protect him, we knew it was important to tell him the full facts. We’ve always been open and honest with him and this time it wasn’t going to be different. He took the news so maturely… and instantly became a source of strength and positivity for me. In some situations now, he even reverses roles and takes on being the parent, reminding me of things I need to do! I believe that it’s imperative to keep kids involved in a situation like this. They are a lot more resilient than we give them credit for. It’s important to spend time with them and include them, rather than make them wait on the side-lines, not being told yet instinctively knowing everything. In our effort to protect them from the pain and realities of life, we might end up doing the opposite. I’m spending time with Ranveer right now, while he’s on summer vacation. His madness and shenanigans help me #SwitchOnTheSunshine. And today, we derive strength from each other #OneDayAtATime
Cancer is a disease which affects more than just your physical health; it has a debilitating impact on your mental health too. Cancer diagnosis is distressing, but what's more distressing is to see your loved ones go through the misery. If you are dealing with any such situation, read here to know what Psychiatrist Dr Sanjay Chugh has to say.
My 36 years old client said to me, "I don't think I have been able to tell my own self yet. How do tell them that I have cancer?" To tell you the honest truth, there is no real answer to that. There is no formula to it. How do you make sure that your family doesn't get devastated with this news? How do you try to be sensitive to their feelings while you're not quite sure how you are feeling? How do you tell them to not worry while your own mind is flooded with 'What now' and 'What ifs', when the only tangible emotions might be intermittent fear and confusion?
Also read: Breast Cancer: Everything You Need To Know
As a professional, I find it unnerving how often I find myself addressing such questions these days especially as the age of the questioner is decreasing. One may say it's tougher for the family when the person with cancer is young, but emotional pain is a very subjective entity. It cannot be compared. For each person, his or her pain is enormous and often unbearable. So, regardless of the age of the person, accepting the diagnosis and then disclosing it may not be an easy task. If, however, one were to find himself in such a predicament, there are a few guidelines that he may want to keep in mind.
It's important to be in touch with how you are feeling before you embark upon this task of disclosing. Please note that I am talking about being in touch and not acceptance. Accepting your diagnosis may take some time. Don't wait for that to happen before telling others. You may feel a whole range of emotions or states of mind - shock, anger, rage, disbelief, denial, sadness and fear interspersed with phases of numbness. It may be useful to see these as milestones on the road to acceptance.
In your own mind, be clear about your reasons for disclosing your diagnosis. This will automatically select for you the people you want to share this with. There are largely three categories of people in this regard -
a) Family and others who are as good as family,
b)People who need to be informed for logistical or practical support, and
c) The outsiders who may be well-meaning but also a potential drain on your limited mental and emotional capacity. It's the first two categories that you may want to talk to. What one usually needs at this time is emotional and practical support from non-judgmental people.
In my experience, it is best not to spend much energy figuring out 'how' to talk about your diagnosis with your loved ones. The more you delay it the more you may end up feeling burdened with the whole task. Keep it simple and straight. You may want to save your energy for the impact this may have on your loved ones. They will have their set of emotions and questions. Do not bother trying to figure out a way of talking that will ease the blow. It is going to be tough on them too. Healing happens fastest when we keep it real and warm.
(Dr Sanjay Chugh is a Senior Psychiatrist based in Delhi)
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