Did you happen to see this article — “‘You Look Great’ and Other Lies” — in the June 10th New York Times? It’s a must-read. The article talks about what you should say and do, and what you shouldn’t say or do, when you’re caring for a seriously ill friend.
For example, Karen and I cringe now thinking about how many times we’ve said, “Let me know if there is anything I can do.” Even though the words are obviously well intentioned, the Times article points out how the comment is just an easy way out of a difficult situation and suggests that thoughtful and specific help — like mowing a friend’s lawn, cleaning a friend’s house or just bringing over a meal — is far more appreciated. Don’t make your friend do the thinking — instead, pick a necessary, everyday errand and just do it.
Be a good and caring friend and read this important article. You’ll always be glad that you did. Kim