Caregiving issues: Bumping heads & finding time to socialize

May 8, 2015

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Socializing as a caregiver

Caregiving can be the most difficult task on earth. As a caregiver, you spend most of your time helping a loved one. Or should I say, all of your time? With so much to complete in one week, you barely have time for yourself. Before you can take good care of others, make sure you take care of yourself first. Your health, happiness, and social life is important. Caregiving can take a toll on ones social life and many relationships fail because of it. Oftentimes caregiving takes away from quality time spent with friends, relatives, and partners. This results in frustration, depression, and isolation. All of these feelings can be avoided if you can get some help with your caregiving. It wouldn’t hurt to ask someone for a hand. I know, it is easier said than done but this way, you will have some time to take care of yourself and interact with others.

Socializing as a caregiver is important to maintain.  Not only are you a caregiver but you’re also a friend, partner, and family member to those who love you. If things become too busy and you cannot make it to a social event, a phone call or an email is also great. Even dinner at your place with whoever you want to spend time with would be a good idea. You can also write down a couple of places that you would like to visit and when you get a chance, take the time to explore these places. Life is short and you should never constrain yourself.

Taking care of people you don’t get along with

No matter what you do, no matter what you try, you just tend to always bump heads with them. Yes, I’m referring to family members. A bigger challenge unfolds when you have to take care of a family member you don’t get along with. The duty of a caregiver already has its stresses and burdens and helping someone who is hard to deal with will make matters worse. Honestly, caregiving can also be much easier if you have a great relationship with your family member. It is hectic to spend most of your time with someone you don’t get along with. Remember that this is someone who needs your support and help, so try to figure out why you don’t get along with your relative. Also, come up with ways that would improve the relationship.

Relatives who suffer from health issues, mental illnesses and physical disabilities may take their frustration out on you as the caregiver. Even though that is unfair, it happens to people all the time. It is okay to ignore certain things especially if it will affect your mental well-being. Things to ignore is verbal abuse and aggressive demands. You can push name- calling, cursing, and being told what to do underneath the rug. On the other side of the coin, you shouldn’t ignore physical assault. Letting your relative know that physical abuse is not acceptable is necessary. Who would want to take care for someone who physically attacks them? It will make it difficult for you to accomplish your day to day goal as a caregiver.

As I have stated earlier, caregiving has its burdens and obstacles and helping a difficult relative makes matters worse. Make sure to spend some quality time by yourself. This can help you get your thoughts together and prepare you for the next days ahead. It also best to get advice from family members and friends on how to deal with this challenge.

Written by Brenda Marie
Hey there, I am a sociology student at City College. I also work as a Home Health Aide, which I love. On my spree time I enjoy reading, writing, and listening to music.

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