As a family caregiver, it can be difficult not to let family dynamics get in the way. For those who have been nurtured by loving parents who took care of all their needs, offering the same level of care may be second nature. But what if you have been scarred by childhood experiences and resolved to stay away from difficult members of the family later in life, only to end up returning to provide for them in a period of need?
AARP offers some helpful tips for family caregivers who would like to do something to conquer old wounds with regard to providing care:
- Establish emotional boundaries. It is possible to offer compassionate caregiving while staying emotionally detached. Envision looking after the needs of someone you’ve never met, and make an effort to hold that mindset with a difficult member of the family, trying to keep personal feelings and hurts out of the equation while meeting his / her care needs with compassion.
- Try to separate the past from today. While your family member might have displayed a pattern of behavior causing you pain in past times, perhaps with indignant outbursts or belittling comments, it’s essential to separate that pain from today’s struggles. For example, someone with Alzheimer’s may go through a stage of aggressive behavior, which can be a hallmark struggle of this disease, instead of a continuation of parenting mistakes.
- Try changing your expectations. Some members of the family walk into a caregiving role with the aim of changing the course of a relationship, convinced that if perhaps they forget about past hurts and offer the very best possible care, the person will soon be changed into someone loving, kind and respectful after a lifetime of difficulties. The fact remains, though, that storybook endings are few in number. Keeping expectations realistic helps reduce possible future disappointments.
Most of all, realize that no one needs to feel “stuck” in caring for a challenging family member. The professional St. Joseph, MI home health care[S4] team at Home Sweet Home In-Home Care is fully trained, experienced, and equipped to give the highly skilled and compassionate care that allows family caregivers peace of mind. A number of the various ways we can help include:
- Personal care assistance, such as bathing, getting dressed, and using the toilet
- Planning and creating delicious meals
- Keeping the home environment clean and tidy
- Running errands
- Providing transportation to health-related appointments and any other outings
- And more
We can help you discover a senior care solution that can work for your family. Contact us at 269-849-9252 for a free in-home assessment and to learn more about our St. Joseph, MI home health care.