ASK DR. FRAN – Trying to keep life as normal as possible

Dear Dr. Fran,

I’ve been undergoing cancer treatments but have not talked to my kids about it, trying to keep life as normal as possible. Is this O.K.?




Dear BG,

Cancer is a family disease. No matter how well we feel we are handling it, our children are sharing this experience with us. Let’s not forget that they are exposed to cancer through the media their relationships with friends and neighbors and all of those ribbons everywhere.

As difficult as it might be, at our most vulnerable time, they need us to be able to talk to them and help them through this scary time

Believe it or not this is a teaching opportunity. A chance for our kids to see what resilience looks like in how we manage this disease, deal with it head on, tend to it, talk about it, all the while maintaining as much of our everyday lives as possible. Don’t be afraid of tears, yours or theirs, it’s natural, and healthy not to have to hide feelings.

In over thirty years of clinical practice and life experiences, I have never met a child, teen or young adult who was not profoundly affected by their parents’ cancer, and didn’t need hugs kisses and reassurance that you are there for them.

Dr. Frances Wollman Baumgarten
Center for Cancer Counseling
A not for profit Cancer Counseling program

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