The first activity book of its kind, Talking with My Treehouse Friends about Cancer, provides a creative, informative outlet for children during a difficult time.
“It is hard to think of an occurrence more disruptive to family life than the diagnosis of cancer in a parent or grandparent,” says Peter R. van Dernoot, founder of The Children’s Treehouse Foundation, an organization committed to providing support in these difficult situations. In connection with his efforts to help children cope with such heart-wrenching news, Peter van Dernoot has created a unique diary and workbook, Talking with My Treehouse Friends about Cancer.
This full-color activity book includes a variety of fun projects such as drawing, coloring, pasting, and writing, to encourage children to articulate their new emotions and questions. By finishing statements such as “I remember how I found out about the cancer,” and drawing “chemo stopping the cancer,” children learn how to cope with the disease and its impact. Additionally, the book informs about cancer in an easily understandable and non-threatening manner, using metaphors to explain cancer’s spread and the side effects kids may witness. A must for any family dealing with a parent’s or grandparent’s cancer, Talking with My Treehouse Friends about Cancer communicates with children in a language they understand.
“As a practicing oncologist, I find that my patients frequently need help communicating with their children. This activity book … offers age-appropriate ways to help with the children’s needs.” —Anthony Elias, MD, University of Colorado
Available through: Fulcrum Publishing, 4690 Table Mountain Drive, suite 100, Golden, CO 80403 Telephone: 800-992-2908 www.fulcrumbooks.com
Is it my fault Mom has cancer? Will I get cancer? What will happen if Mom dies?
These are just a few of the thoughts that children have when a parent is diagnosed with cancer. Now, this re-edited book, comprising 30 essays written by parents with cancer, their children and health-care experts, “provides an instant support group for families in which a parent has been diagnosed with cancer,” reports the Susan G. Komen Foundation. And it “Provides valuable advice on how to discuss the impact of this disease on the whole family…,” says Lance Armstrong.
When Peter van Dernoot’s wife was diagnosed with terminal cancer in 1980, no one knew of resources available to help his children cope with their mother’s illness. During a three year period, he collected essays, letters, poems and drawings from patients and their families, hoping that their first-hand experiences would help other parent guide their children to emotionally healthy lives, no matter what the outcome of the disease.
Every family deals with cancer differently, but parents and medical experts agree: Parents should talk to their children about cancer as soon as possible, in a way they can understand. If discussed properly, potentially frightening experiences such as hospital visits and hair loss can be transformed into positive events.
Cancer does not have to traumatize your children. Helping Your Children Cope With Your Cancer provides insights into your children’s feelings, and options on how to reassure them. In support of this effort, Bristol-Myers Squibb has purchased 20,000 copies of the book for families who will benefit from it.
Available through: Hatherleigh Press, 5-22 46th Ave., Suite 200, Long Island City, NY, 11101, 1-800-528-2550.