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Emotional Support

Photo of counsellor talking with a male patient
A cancer diagnosis and treatment can be overwelming and you may need some information and support.

What help do you need?

‎What do you need?

Your need for emotional support will vary during each stage of cancer and cancer treatments. Every person is different in how they respond to distressful situations.  Some people have more knowledge or access to support than others. Some like in-person contact while others prefer online information.

Please let your healthcare team know your concerns and need for assistance. 

What can a counsellor do?

Counsellors are a part of your healthcare team

Your healthcare team includes counselling. We want you to have all support you need to deal with the distress and challenges that come with a cancer diagnosis and treatment. 

You might find you want a counsellor to assess your situation and provide support and referrals to programs or services. You can make an appointment with Patient & Family Counselling Services at your cancer centre.

Finding support

Helpful handouts

Each topic provides handouts with information, tips and strategies to help you manage the changes and distressful feelings that come with having cancer. View or print out a copy of a handout. 

Support at my cancer centre

Schedule a Patient & Family Counselling appointment at your cancer centre or find out about support groups at your cancer centre.

Borrow a BC Cancer Agency library resource or find a pathfinder (resource sheets)

Support in my community

  • Talk to your family doctor
  • Counsellors and psychologists in your community may also be a support you choose to access. 
  • BC Mental Health Information Line - 1.800.661.2121 or 604.669.7600 in the Lower Mainland. The information line provides free information 24 hours a day about symptoms, causes, treatments, support programs and publications. 
  • Canadian Mental Health Association (BC) - 1.800.555.8222 or 604.688.3234 for Lower Mainland 
  • Antidepressant Skills Workbook (a workbook that focuses on managing depression) 
  • Kelty's Key Online Therapy - online courses for dealing with anxiety, depression, family support and insomnia
  • Talk to someone else who has had cancer - Canadian Cancer Society: Peer support program 
  • Join an online support group with Cancer Chat Canada
  • Call the BC Bereavement Helpline call toll free1-877-779-2223 or in the Lower Mainland 604-738-9950.
  • For bereavement support visit the Canadian Virtual Hospice

Ordering resources online

Relaxation Cds and Publications

Go to the PHSA bookstore to order copies of our relaxation cds. They include music, autogenic, breath work, visualization, and guided imagery.  All publications and cds were created by cancer care professionals.

‎Copies of handouts, booklets and relaxation cds may also be available at your local Cancer Centre, Patient and Family Counselling Services or borrowed from the BCCA library.

Emotional Health & Cancer

Every experience with cancer is unique

Sometimes it is helpful to talk with a professional or another cancer patient and sometimes you need print or online information. Click on the image to download a copy of our brochure, Every experience with cancer is unique, which lists the different kinds of resource you can access. ‎

Emotional Health & Cancer

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