“Help for the Caring” (NeurologyNow)

There is a good article in the October/November 2015 issue of NeurologyNow magazine about family caregivers accepting assistance by hiring home care aides.  The key points of advice are:

* Manage your worries.  The author notes that a family caregiver persevered through two sub-par home care aides until she found a third one she and her husband were comfortable with.

* Let go of guilt.  A psychologist quoted in the article says:  “I tell caregivers that guilt is a cul-de-sac; it doesn’t lead anywhere.”

* Allow yourself to feel relief.  And, again – let go of guilt that you feel relief.

* Reach out for support.  The article reports on a caregiver who went to a caregiver support group five years earlier and realized she wasn’t ready to share her situation openly with others.  Then the caregiver started attending a support group when the time was right.

* Acknowledge loss.  A psychologist notes that grief continues as the family caregiver loses more parts of their loved one.

* Recognize how you’ve grown.  The author says:  “For many people, caring for someone is deeply rewarding.”

* Recalibrate your role.  “You may not be cooking meals or toileting the person [as outside help may be doing that], but that frees you up to be the advocate, case manager, and emotional support” for your family member,” says the psychologist.

* Consider your next chapter after the caregiving ends.  Resume hobbies or reinvest in relationships that languished while you were caregiving.

Here’s a link to to the full article:

Help for the Caring: Not all caregivers want an extra hand, even when they really need it.  Here’s how to accept assistance — and handle the ambivalent emotions that may arise.
by Christine Richmond
Neurology Now
October/November 2015, Volume 11, Issue 5, pages 54-57

Happy reading!