As a teen, do you remember how important it was to have time and space for yourself – having a safe space to call your own, shutting out the world, writing your thoughts down in your diary? The need for privacy that began then may become overshadowed when providing care for someone else. Yet it’s still extremely important to be able to separate yourself both physically and mentally from your caregiving role to take time for yourself.
How to Establish Boundaries as a Caregiver by Prioritizing Privacy
It’s more difficult than it may seem. Being a caregiver often means you feel the need to keep an eye on the person you care for at all times. There are some steps you can take to help, however. Try:
- Making concrete house rules. Determining good boundaries in shared living spaces by coming up with basic rules can create a healthy situation for everyone involved. For instance, take turns selecting television shows to watch, so one person isn’t monopolizing the remote. Compromises such as this will likely make together time less stressful for everyone.
- Considering emotional privacy. Time to disconnect from your role as a caregiver is vital. Go on vacations, attend events and activities with other friends and family members, or take a novel to the park for a relaxing afternoon. Home Sweet Home In-Home Care’s care experts are always on hand to fill your caregiving shoes when you take time for self-care.
- Designating places of privacy for yourself and the older adult. The person you’re caring for needs privacy as much as you do, which is another good reason for creating these boundaries as a caregiver. Agree that whenever either of you needs some alone time, you can retreat to your selected spot and only interrupt one another in case of an urgent situation.
Special Considerations for Dementia
For older adults with dementia, establishing privacy boundaries is of particular importance, but it may also be more difficult to achieve. The person may require 24/7 oversight to ensure safety, but this does not mean that you should (or can) provide that level of care yourself.
We frequently hear from primary family caregivers that there is not anyone in their circle of close friends and family who knows the older adult or the requirements of dementia care well enough to assist. In cases like these, our trained and experienced dementia care professionals are invaluable. We can partner with you to ensure the consistent, reliable, skilled care a senior with dementia needs, while you take the regular breaks from care you need.
Contact us online or at (866) 229-2505 for further caregiving tips and assistance in finding a healthier life balance. Our individualized home care services are offered in Kalamazoo, Battle Creek, St. Joseph, and also the surrounding areas.