The Best Books for Families and Supporters of People With Cancer

shelved under Self-Help and Health & Medicine

When someone you care about has cancer, everything changes. Everything. How do you make sense of what's happening? How do you help them to get well?

You may feel it’s selfish to also consider your own emotions and look after yourself, but in fact it’s the most important thing you can do (I explore this in depth in my book Their Cancer – Your Journey). I hope these books will be a help to you.


Help Me Live: 20 Things People with Cancer Want You to Know

by Lori Hope

This book gives great insight into how your attitude and the way you communicate can have a positive effect on your loved one's cancer experience.


The Light Within: The Extraordinary Friendship of a Doctor and Patient Brought Together by Cancer

by Deborah Sills, Lois M. Ramondetta

This is a story of the friendship between a cancer patient and her doctor, who met only because Deborah had cancer. Because it had both points of view, I found it very helpful in giving insights into the feelings of someone with a severe illness. Please be aware that Deborah dies before the end of the book, though even in loss there are messages of hope.


Journalution: Journaling to Awaken Your Inner Voice, Heal Your Life and Manifest Your Dreams

by Sandy Grason

When you have strong emotions, as is natural when someone you care about is ill, how do you handle them? It may be difficult to find someone to talk to as others around you can also be upset. Keeping a journal allows you to express those difficult emotions, and look at where you do want your life to go. This book is a great guide to get you started.


A Gentle Dying: The Simple Guide to Achieving a Peaceful Death

by Felicity Warner

If someone in your family is approaching the end of their life, they may want to explore what this means to them. This book will help family members find the courage to do this with them and to create the kind of peaceful death we would all want. A comforting companion for facing the greatest challenge we can imagine, this book covers the spiritual aspects and therapies of a cancer battle covered in depth.


The Sedona Method: Your Key to Lasting Happiness, Success, Peace and Emotional Well-Being

by Jack Canfield, Hale Dwoskin

This book describes the simplest and most effective way for letting go of difficult emotions in the moment. Having the ability to do this can lessen the likelihood that you will "snap" under any stress you're experiencing and say or do something you later regret!


The Selfish Pig's Guide to Caring

by Hugh Marriott, illustrated by David Lock

If you find yourself becoming a full-time caregiver, or your life significantly impacted by caring, please read this book. As the humorous title suggests, you are not selfish and the author will describe many issues and situations which seem oh so familiar.


Past Caring

by Audrey Jenkinson

Whether you're a current or past caregiver, you can find a lot of insight in these pages. Many caregivers describe their experiences and challenges, and the author offers advice and insight on how to overcome those challenges.


The Shack

by William P. Young

Opinion is divided on this book, which is a fictional account exploring how God can allow suffering. I found it a very enlightening read. Cancer is not directly addressed in the book, but it could give insight to anyone who is questioning their faith as a result of illness in the family.


Cancer For Two: An Inspiring True Story and Guide for Cancer Patients and Their Partners

by Dave Balch

This memoir of a husband’s experience of supporting his wife through breast cancer is interwoven with chapters giving skills for coping. I found it to have sound principals throughout.


When Someone You Love Has Cancer: A Guide to Help Kids Cope

by Alaric Lewis, illustrated by R. W. Alley

Are young children involved? This book will help you explain how they might feel when someone in their family has cancer -– and how to cope with those feelings.