Asking for Help While on Treatment
Last updated: February 2022
It is not easy to ask for help when we are sick with the hepatitis C virus (HCV). With the new drugs, you can be rid of the virus and begin to heal your body.
But it cannot be done alone. You need a support system in place before you begin treatment, if your family is not close by, find another way to get your needs met.
You may have to call on friends, neighbors, your local church, or other community providers.
I am always grateful for help, especially since my liver transplant. It has been a long five years since my diagnosis and I would never have made it without support.
My brother and sisters have been great, and so has my daughter. But it has not always been smooth.
I have made a lot of mistakes, and we have had to do some damage control.
I have put together some simple ideas to help you put together a team of supporters that can see you through:
Plan ahead for what you will need. It may be a physical need, money for medication, housekeeping help, or a drive to the doctor’s office.
Make a list. Do not forget to include shopping for and preparing food!
Asking for help from others
Get clear on what family members and friends can do for you. "Please" and "thank you" can go a long way.
Make a list of your supporters and ask, specifically, what they can offer.
For example, "Would you take me to the doctor on this date? Would you pick up items for me at the grocery store or pharmacy on this day?"
Then accept their answer. Do not try to talk them into something that they cannot or will not do.
That is called “guilting” and usually results in family members feeling resentment toward you. Been there and it is not pretty.
Being reasonable with your expectations
Do not expect more than they can give. That can lead to disappointment.
If they have their own obligations, your stuff can cause them to feel overwhelmed. Try and look at life from their viewpoint before you ask.
Try not to take it personally if they have to cancel or postpone some help they are providing for you. Thank them for being honest and telling you in plenty of time to make other arrangements.
Avoid telling yourself a sad story about why they cannot do it. That only leads to your feelings being hurt.
Be respectful of their time. If a family member comes to drop something off, or help with a chore, ask them how long they can stay. Help them to stay on schedule.
This will help keep them from dreading stopping by.
I am as helpless as a newborn kitten these days. I can take my meds and shuffle around to prepare a meal, but being unable to drive has really left me dependent on the help of others.
These five steps are tried and true and can help you to get your needs met and enrich your relationships at the same time.