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Talking With Your Family

Learn about genes and cancer, signs of hereditary cancer, genetic counseling, types of genetic tests and what results mean for you and your family.

Related Force Information

Confronting Hereditary Breast and Ovarian Cancer
This FORCE-endorsed book was written by founder and Executive Director Sue Friedman; geneticist Rebecca Sutphen, MD; and health writer, Kathy Steligo. This book is a comprehensive resource on all topics related to hereditary cancer, genetic testing, and risk-management.

Talking about BRCA in Your Family Tree
This booklet developed by FORCE and the Familial Cancer Special Interest Group of the National Society of Genetic Counselors is intended for parents preparing to discuss a familial BRCA mutation with their children.

How Children Respond to a Parent's BRCA Test Results
Article from Spring 2012 Joining FORCEs Newsletter reporting research on what parents tell children about BRCA testing and how children react to this information.

Sharing risk information with children
May 5, 2010: free, on-demand webinar by psychologist Karen Hurley, PhD focuses on feelings that parents commonly experience when dealing with the possibility of risk to their children and guidelines for communication.

Can BRCA Testing Benefit Young Breast Cancer Survivors Who Have Little or No Family History?
Summer 2007 article about research showing that young women with breast cancer should receive genetic counseling, even if they do not have a strong family history of cancer

Coping with Risk and Family Dynamics
Fall 2006 FORCE newsletter article summarizing Dr. Paul Jacobsen’s presentation at our 2006 conference on handling family dynamics when disclosing hereditary cancer risks to family

Hereditary Cancer: How do I tell my children?
Winter 2008 Joining FORCEs newsletter article summarizing presentation at Joining FORCEs Conference on this topic.

National Family History Day: “My Family Health Portrait”
Fall 2005 FORCE newsletter article about the U.S. Surgeon General’s family history initiative.

Printable worksheet for sharing genetic information with family members
FORCE developed this printable worksheet to assist people with sharing medical information with family members.

Your Experiences Talking to Family Members About the Inherited Mutation in Your Family: Results from the ABOUT Network Family Communication Survey
Summary of findings from the ABOUT Network survey on patients' experiences with communicating cancer risk to adult family members.


Taking Care of Your Girls
Marica Weiss. This how-to-guide is written for adolescent girls. It provides balanced information, and answers the questions about breast health and development that most adolescent girls are afraid to ask..

A Cancer in the Family: Take Control of Your Genetic Inheritance

My Mother's Breast:Daughters Face their Mothers Cancer

Other Websites

Information cards -breast and ovarian cancer syndrome
Myriad Genetics offers a template for cards that people who had testing with Myriad can print or share with family members and health care providers. 1940 census records
Look up basic data from the 1940 US census. obituary search vital records link

Cyndi's List of Geneaology Sites on the Internet
A useful compilation of sites to help you chronicle your family history.

Jewish Gen
A free, easy-to-use genealogy website features thousands of databases, research tools, and other resources to help those with Jewish ancestry research and find family members.

Geneaology Relationship Chart
Is she a "first cousin once removed" or "a fourth great-grand niece"? This handy resource helps you determine what to call the relationship between family members.

Surgeon General's Family Health History Initiative
The U.S. Surgeon General has designated Thanksgiving as Family History Day. They encourage families to share their family medical history. This site includes a downloadable Family History Tool that allows you to track the incidence of certain diseases in your family.

FORCE:Facing Our Risk of Cancer Empowered