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Caregiving Series Part 2 – Sharing the Load – Some Tips

Caregiving Series Part 2 – Sharing the Load – Some Tips

Just because you love them doesn’t make it easy all the time. Many caregivers cherish the time and opportunity spent looking after their loved ones – but this is not without some corresponding emotional and physical stressors. Facing the mortality of a loved one, changes in family and household arrangements, reduced time for children, spouses, and recreational activities, added workload and increased financial pressures can all take its toll. You can’t sprint a marathon! You need to be available for the long haul, and that means creating new strategies to manage the acute and chronic demands. Control What You Can. You might not be able to change the health challenges your loved ones are enduring, so focus on what you can control — your reactions and stress management strategies. Share the Load. You don’t have to do it all by yourself. Reach out to family and friends and let them know specifically how they can contribute and help. From money to transportation, cooking, and respite, many welcome the opportunity to assist, but just don’t know how. Keep the Communication Lines Open. Bring family members into the caregiving conversations early and often to ensure everyone is in the loop, has a say, and issues can be resolved before they become problematic. Setting up family meetings, reaching out to others, and establishing ongoing communication strategies are effective ways to ensure that all members feel heard and are working toward the shared goal of quality care for their loved ones. Basic Tips for Holding a Family Meeting What: Set an agenda ahead of time. Contact family members to ask for their input...