How can I help my Mum

My mum had grade 3 breast cancer, they operated and have managed to remove it all, however because it is a cancer that grows on its own, she is having to have FEC -T.  It starts this Thursday.  How can i best help her get through this.  What things will I need to look out for, how will she be feeling etc.  Thank you in advance.  x

Hi thrummiekid,

You sound like a fab daughter, btw.

I didn’t need chemo so can’t advise, but do look at the ‘chemotherapy’ thread in ‘going through treatment,’ as it tends to be quieter on this board. The ladies there will be happy to advise you on this & there have been previous threads on a similar theme.

Wishing your mum well & maybe she would like to join the forum as well, especially the monthly chemo threads.

ann x


Dear Thrummiekid


having gone through the same chemo, I can reflect upon what help would have been appreciated but remember also, that everyone’s experiences may be different.


_As I was working full-time prior to my BC, I am the only family member that drives, indeed, I was the chauffeur for them at weekends or evenings. So, _if you can drive, when you can, maybe help drive your Mum to appointments or other places she needs to be. I had to drive myself to chemo each time with sick bags at the ready…sometimes I didn’t know how on earth I did so.


Many ladies in the other posts will give you plenty of ideas about ‘care packages’ such as lip balms, skin creams, etc so I won’t expand on those ideas.


What I WOULD have loved was some practical help. By chemo 4, I was on my knees with depleted energy, sickness, etc. The ironing mounds built up, my bed sheets needed changing, my small, overgrown garden needed help and just, simply, practical jobs which one normally undertakes with ease may not be possible for your Mum.


She may get mouth ulcers and most certainly her taste of food may change. Best I can describe it is like chewing on gloopy cardboard. My nausea throughout chemo was horrendous. Even aromas I loved previously, I_ couldn’t tolerate. Your Mum can see a Dietician at the hospital if she struggles with food who can advise and give you printed sheets of what could help or be tolerated. Small snacks, high energy, gentle on the mouth, sometimes sweet or spicy if the mouth ulcers calm. Your Mum’s tastes may also change and fluctuate throughout chemo. On a bad day, I could just about keep down a bowl of soup but it was better than nothing. On other days, I couldn’t even bear the thought of the same soup. Bread, potatoes, etc, starch laden foods merely stuck in my mouth so those were vanquished too. Lemon based drinks helped as did chunks of pineapple. My taste didn’t return until just recently; 5 months after the chemo._


MOST of all, your Mum will truly appreciate you by her side; understanding, loving and patient. Lower any expectations of her, be well informed about how she may feel both emotionally and physically and when she needs to rest, tuck her up gently and hold her hand. When she needs ‘alone time’, allow her that too. Listen, observe and just be there for her whenever you can…but not to the detriment of overloading yourself with stress. Pace yourself. Organise others to pop in to see her. Advise them not to just sit there with a cup of tea quoting a Google or the latest miracle cure! 


Sending much love love and care. It’s time to put the Boudica head on now with copious strength, love and eventual healing. I’m so glad you’re there for your Mum. Xxx



Prayers and best wishes to your mum.