7 Comforting Words for Someone With Cancer

Finding out someone you love has cancer is a difficult time.  You’re worried about their health and you want them to get the best treatments available.  If they are in your immediate family, you’re might be worried about the financial strain a cancer diagnosis can bring.  And I’m sure you’re thinking about their mental health, too.

As all of these worries are going through your head, you are also grappling with the right words to say to them.  You want to make them feel better but you’re at a loss for words.  Plus, you’re worried that you might say the wrong thing. You might also be thinking What are some comforting words for someone with cancer?

As a 15-year cancer survivor, I’ve had so many people say kind words to comfort me during my cancer journey.  I still have people who check in, just to make sure I’m doing okay.  For this post, I am sharing seven of the most comforting words people have said to me as a cancer patient.  

(Disclaimer- this post may contain affiliate links. If you choose to purchase from one of these links, I may receive a small commission at no cost to you. All advice given is my own opinion and cannot be used as a substitute for consulting a medical or mental health professional.  For more information, please view my disclaimer link page here.)

“I’m Here for You.”

Even with family, friends, and a team of doctors, facing cancer can still feel very lonely.  Letting a cancer patient know that you’re willing to stand beside them will help them feel better about the situation.   This simple phrase is a very positive message for someone with cancer.  

I was overwhelmed with all the love people showed me during my surgery and chemo treatments!  So many people sent cards, called to check on me, or came for regular visits.  It felt awesome to be loved by so many people.  

I Want to Help With…”

Offering to help a cancer patient is a great way to show your support.  But, the blanket “let me know if you need anything” is not what they need to hear.  Cancer patients have a LOT going on in their lives!.  They’re kicking cancer’s butt, after all!  Thinking of ways to ask you to help them is probably too much.

I wasn’t teaching during my chemo treatments, so my kids would need rides to and from school.  A new friend from church told me she wanted to help get my kids to school.  Not worrying about this one part of my life was such a relief for me and my husband!  Thanks to her generosity, I also found one of my closest friends.

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Comfort a Cancer Patient

“Where Can I Learn More?”

There’s a lot to learn when you’re diagnosed with cancer.  You’re getting so much new information at each doctor’s appointment.  After most of my appointments, my brain felt like it was about to explode with all of it!  Then I would do my own research at home, which left me even more overwhelmed than before.

Having someone learn along with you helps take the pressure off you as the patient.  When I was diagnosed, several of my family members started doing their own research.  Then they shared what they learned with me.  I was thankful that I didn’t have to find it all on my own.  

I also had someone go with me to each doctor’s visit.  Knowing that I didn’t have to remember everything helped me focus on getting well!

“How’s Your Family?”

Being a cancer patient takes of 99.9% of your life.  You’re always thinking about cancer, researching cancer, or talking to someone about cancer.  This may be hard to believe, but cancer patients get tired of talking about cancer.  All. The. Time.   Sometimes, we just want to talk about normal life.

It was a huge relief for me when someone would start a conversation that wasn’t about cancer.  It didn’t matter if they wanted to talk about the weather, their new shoes, or ask about my kids.  Talking about normal stuff helped me forget I was sick for a few minutes.

“You’re in my Prayers.”

One of the most comforting things people said to me when I was sick was that they were praying for me.  Whether you are a person of faith or not, knowing that someone is praying for you is very comforting.  It was very uplifting to know there were people all over the world praying for my healing.

Praying for someone you care about is a very personal thing.  I consider it a privilege to bring someone’s deepest needs to God.  Ephesians 1:16 says, “I have not stopped thanking God for you.  I pray for you constantly…”  Letting cancer patients know that they are continually in your prayers is a wonderful way to show how much you care.

“You Can Do This.”

Being diagnosed with cancer is a very vulnerable time.  Any strength or confidence someone had disappears instantly.   It can take a long time to get that confidence back.  

“You can do this,” is such a simple sentence but it might mean everything to a cancer patient.  Even when they don’t feel strong these comforting words from someone might be just what they need to hear in order to keep fighting.  Anytime you can encourage a cancer patient to keep going, you’ve done the right thing!

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Be Willing to Listen to Someone With Cancer

What if you have no idea what to say to a cancer patient?  You want to use comforting words for someone with cancer, but nothing seems quite right.  Guess what?  That’s totally okay!

Actions often speak louder than words.  So maybe your friend just needs someone to listen to them.  So many people want to help someone with cancer.  They want to offer help or give advice, which is good.  But sometimes, all someone with cancer needs is someone to listen to them.  No advice, no judgment.  Just be there.


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