Your family

Your illness may make things a bit different with your family. In some ways it could bring you closer together. You may find your brothers and sisters are really thoughtful and caring.

But difficult situations can sometimes put a strain on the whole family, however close you usually are. Your parents or carers could become anxious or extra protective, and your siblings could behave differently too.

Remember, this isn't your fault! It's important not to get stressed out if they're acting differently. However, the tips below could help you all get on well during this time.


Your parents will want to spend time with you and help you, but they might not know how. To make sure you get the help you need, let them know what they can do. It could be bringing in something tasty to eat, letting them know if there's something you want to talk about, or even saying you'd like to be left alone for a bit. Even if it does seem scary, being open and honest with your parents is still a good idea. Try to tell them the truth about how you’re feeling, your worries, and the things that confuse or embarrass you. If you have honest talks with your parents as much as you can, they’ll be more able to help you.

Brothers and sisters

Your brother or sister might have lots of questions they want to ask, but they could be worried about bothering you or your parents. That’s why it’s good for them to have someone else to talk to about your illness. A trusted friend or relative may be able to help. You could even ask your social worker or nurse to talk to them, or to suggest someone else who could help.

September 2015, next planned review 2017