My family

Telling family and friends that end of life is near, and seeing them upset by the news is hard.

Often, patients worry about how their loved ones will cope at this time.  You may decide not to talk about your feelings, hopes and fears, while those close to you may not want to ask about these things in case they hurt or upset you. Helping people understand that you can and want to talk about your end of life can help everyone at this very difficult time.

“I don’t fear dying, it’s the impact on people around me.”  Lindy, advanced breast cancer, Australian Story, May 2023

Questions to your cancer team might be:

  • How do I tell my family that I am dying?
  • What help is there for my family to cope with this news?
  • Where can I get some help with talking to my children about the end of my life?
  • How to I talk to a young child about death and what that means?
  • How do I find out what my child already understands?


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Ways to begin a conversation

You could say to your friends and familyQuestions to ask yourself might be
I am worried about the impact of my death on you.How would you like to be remembered?
I want to forgive you for what has happened in the past. I know it will be hard, but can we talk about that?What do you want people to know about you?
I would like us to talk about my legacy and the values and things that I hope you can pass on in the familyWhat is important that people know?
 What aspects of your legacy are most important to you?