We all know someone in this small tight-knit community facing and dealing with a life-threatening medical condition such as cancer, heart disease, or any number of others. While researchers and scientists are still finding ways to cure cancer, heart disease, and many other medical conditions, we as community members can help to maintain people’s mental health through some simple, positive tips as follows:
1. Maintain social life with friends. For people dealing with life-threatening medical conditions, now more than ever, your friends are really needed to help you through this process in this stage of your life. A simple coffee get-together or hanging out and chatting is a great way to maintain regular routine in socializing with your personal circle of friends;
2.Stay in contact. A simple text, call or email can go a long way in making them feel that they still matter in one’s life. Although this might not seem like a big deal, the fact that they know you are still in their thoughts definitely means the world to them;
3. Reach out to help. While they battle their life-threatening medical conditions head on, you can help lessen or ease their anxiety or stress by offering assistance such as driving them to their weekly medical appointments, doing some of their house chores, and all other situations that they may need help with.
4.Remember, it’s the same person. Although facing an uphill battle with their medical conditions, they are still the same person before the diagnosis, so don’t change your perception about them. No pity parties. Converse with them as you normally would; don’t change anything. They would automatically feel the different vibe coming from you.
In being mindful of and adhering to these four simple tips, you are doing your part in maintaining your family and friends’ mental health positively and possibly changing their perspective in life in general that they are not alone in battling their life-threatening medical conditions and, most importantly, that they have people who care.
John DLG Demapan JR.(Special to the Saipan Tribune)
John DLG Demapan Jr. is president of the Northern Marianas Protection and Advocacy Systems Inc. board.