My little sister has terminal melanoma and I'm struggling

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My little sister has terminal melanoma and I'm struggling

Hi everyone, this is my first time in any groups so I hope I'm in the right one. 


My sister was diagnosed on new years day 2023 with stage 4 Melanoma that had spread to her brain, lungs, stomach and bowl. She has over 20 lesions in her brain alone with 3 of them pushing on the frontal lobe. She was originally given only 3 weeks, but she's been fighting with chemo and lots of anti seizure medication and it was working. But then the seiures began again at the end of this year and on Friday she called me to tell me her oncologist had given her 3- 6 months left to live. 

My sister lives in Melbourne, and I'm in Newcastle. I feel so trapped and powerless to do anything. They said if she qualifies, she could get gamma knife, but its only going to buy time, it won't cure her. 

I try not to cry when I video chat with her and I'm trying to organise getting out to see her, but even then, there's nothing I can do except hold my sister for what could very well be the last time.

I feel selfish for even writing this down. I know I'm not the one dying. 

I'm trying to stay strong for my son, and still trying to go out and do things, but its so hard to enjoy anything. 

I feel empty.

We grew up on a small property backing onto a dairy farm, it was just me and her playing outside most days. We did everything together from jumping off the water tank on the trampoline to getting chased by a bull in the back paddock. 

I just can't imagine losing her so early. She's only 35. There's still so much left. So much she won't get to see. She has a 7 year old she won't get to watch grow up. 

And they are so far away. 

I'm sorry, I don't know what I'm looking for by posting this? Maybe some advice on how to cope with all this? My boss and my counsellor said I should look for something like this so I'm sorry if I'm in the wrong place.


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Regular Contributor

Re: My little sister has terminal melanoma and I'm struggling

Hi Reece87, that’s such sad news about your sister and it’s obvious you love her so much. Just spend as much time as you can with her, tell her how much you love her. It’s just so very hard to know what to say. Be true to your feelings. Say all the words you need to say to your sister. Sending you love and prayers 🙏💕. LindaG 

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Cancer Council Team

Re: My little sister has terminal melanoma and I'm struggling

Hi Reece87,

Before anything, I would like to send you a big virtual hug, thank you very much for reaching out.

During such painful and difficult times, it is so hard to find the right words to say to make you perhaps feel a bit better.  Do not understimate the power of being  present, to just be there for your sister, even if is just via video call.

As previously mentioned thank you for joining this community and for sharing how you are feeling right now, in a way letting others know what you are going through allows you to process your emotions and fears, while receiving some words of encouragement and support from other members.

I would like to suggest in case you have not done it yet, to call our information and support line on 131120, to check if any of our services are suitable for you (counselling, telephone group support).

Warm regards


Cancer Council

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