group of seniors laughing over coffee

Dear Friends and Family of Caregivers,

First off, thank you for the love and support you have shown the caregiver in your life this far. You want to help– that’s great! Caregivers could use some support.

What to Say and How to Help

  • The caregiving role can be isolating, demanding and at times feel unmanageable. It is natural for a caregiver to feel the burden of sole responsibility for a sick or aging loved one and, as time passes, it becomes less instinctive to ask for help.
  • For as much as the caregiver in your life may need you to step in, s/he may have trouble vocalizing it or understanding what kind of care others can manage. Your support means everything to a caregiver.
  • Try not to voice any judgments that you may have. No matter how much you love someone, it is natural that you might disagree with a friend’s behavior or action. But it is important that you provide a safe, judgment-free space for your friend. The role of caregiver can bring up a lot of unexpected and confusing emotions, like resentment towards someone who is sick. Try to put aside any preconceived notions and listen to your friend. They may be ashamed of what they are feeling and will need someone who will comfort them by telling them it is a normal feeling.
  • Be both specific and general in the support you can provide. For example, say you are always around to talk but tell the caregiver in your life that you are available at a certain time if s/he needs to talk. Ask if they need anything but also say you’re stopping at the pharmacy and offer to pick up a prescription.

There is no expectation to devote all of your time, energy and resources but every little action you take will be a big help to your friend or family member.

Written by Alexandra Axel
Alexandra Axel was the first founding staff member at The Caregiver Space. As a New York native, Allie grew up people-watching and story-collecting, eventually pursuing her undergraduate degree from The College of New Jersey in sociology and creative writing. At The Caregiver Space, she worked with social media, graphic design, blogging, and program development to brand and grow an online community composed of, and focused on, caregivers. From the seedlings of an idea to the thriving community that it is today, Allie was there from the beginning to support the evolution of The Caregiver Space. Allie enjoys writing poetry and short fiction, devouring books, biking, crafting, urban agriculture and imperfectly cooking. She currently resides in Brooklyn with her pup, Hen.

Related Articles

What Is Compassion Fatigue?

What Is Compassion Fatigue?

“Since the pandemic, individuals are coping with so many different forms of stress that might be activating a compassionate part of them that they...

The final five percent

The final five percent

For reasons I still can’t grasp, Conway — a brain-damaged burn victim with seven fingers — never could qualify for disability. Caroline was managing...

Popular categories

Finances
Burnout
After Caregiving
Housing
Relationships
Finding Meaning
Planning
Dying
Finding Support
Work
Grief

Don't see what you're looking for? Search the library

Share your thoughts

2 Comments

  1. Being an #UnPaid #CareGiver Has Been Very Difficult. Giving Unconditional Love to Your Dying Parent is Both Healing and Painful.
    I Cherish The Quality Time I Spend with My Father Dr. Lehman Brightman. I Want to Heal My Father so He May Walk Again.
    I Am Humbly Asking for Help During these Hard Times.
    If You Are Able to Help, I would Greatly Appreciate Your Assistance.
    Sincerely,

    Quanah Parker Brightman

    Reply
  2. thank you….

    Reply

Share your thoughts and experiences

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Join our communities

Whenever you want to talk, there’s always someone up in one of our Facebook communities.

These private Facebook groups are a space for support and encouragement — or getting it off your chest.

Join our newsletter

Thoughts on care work from Cori, our director, that hit your inbox each Monday morning (more-or-less).

There are no grand solutions, but there are countless little ways to make our lives better.

Share your insights

Caregivers have wisdom and experience to share. Researchers, product developers, and members of the media are eager to understand the nature of care work and make a difference.

We have a group specifically to connect you so we can bring about change.

%d bloggers like this: