Whatever your relationship with your brother or sister was like before, it’s likely to change – for better or worse – now that cancer has come into your life.

Try to imagine how they are feeling. They are probably worried about you and may not know how to tell or show you.

Depending on their age, they might also be feeling:

  • scared about what’s going to happen to you
  • angry about extra responsibilities they have to take on while your parents are focused on you
  • left out, or even jealous at the attention you’re getting
  • guilty because they can still go out and have fun when you can’t, or for complaining about having to help out
  • lonely and neglected – like no one understands cares about them.

Sometimes, siblings avoid their brother or sister who has cancer. Many say it is because they can’t bear to see them in pain.

Help them understand

You can help your brother or sister understand what you are going through. Just sitting down and talking with them about how you are both feeling is a big first step – but it should help to make things better.

You can also get them, or suggest they download, a copy of Canteen’s free book ‘Now What …? Dealing with your sibling’s cancer’.