There Is No Emotional Rollercoaster Quite Like The One Ridden By A Caregiver, Those That Are Providing Assistance For An Aging Or Chronically Ill Loved One.
Truly, what emotion doesn’t come into play at some point? Sometimes, all those emotions can be experienced within one afternoon. Perhaps one of the most difficult feelings to manage as a caregiver, however, is guilt; feeling as though you should be doing more for your loved one and less for yourself.
Many times caregivers show no mercy to themselves and fail to accept that they are human also. If you are one of these type of people, ask yourself: What good does this guilt do for you and for the people who need you to provide help and assistance?
If you are coping with such caregiver guilt, here are 3 straightforward things to keep in mind:
- Avoid isolation. Talking about your feelings with a trusted friend, family member, or professional counselor is crucial to see the situation from an objective perspective and to release the burden of carrying those feelings alone.
- Start a journal. It can be very therapeutic to write down your thoughts and feelings in a journal, but it is also beneficial because you can then be able to read back over your journal entries and learn from what you have written. Don’t just write about the negative feelings, also include positive comments. This can raise your spirits on days when you really need it.
- Be open to good advice. Although loving relatives and friends may have oodles of advice about how you should or shouldn’t be feeling, nothing beats the advice of someone who has truly “been there” and had to be a caregiver to their own family. Finding a support group of other family caregivers, particularly if their loved one shares a similar diagnosis, can make a world of difference.
Looking for more information? Visit Hibernian Home Care’s website for training courses and support for caregivers through our Family Caregiver Education Series. This resource is free and designed for use by people caring for friends or loved ones who are homebound, seriously ill or aging. The site includes over 50 training topics, including basic care training, transitioning of care, and information families need to have on many diseases such as Alzheimer’s and dementia. In addition to the courses, the Family Caregiver Education Series provides each caregiver with videos and tip sheets that focus on relevant topics for them.
Also, please contact us at Hibernian Home Care and let us help you explore the benefits of in-home respite care by a professional caregiver.