Being a family caregiver for an elderly loved one can be one of the most meaningful and rewarding experiences that you can have in your life. It can also be stressful, challenging, and difficult for those who have not gone through it to understand. This can mean encountering difficult situations with friends who you want to maintain as important features of your life, but who may not understand what you are going through. The way that you engage with these people can make a tremendous difference in how your relationships persevere throughout your care journey and the benefits that you can receive from your friendships.
June is Effective Communications Month. This is the perfect time for you to work on your communication skills and ensure that you are using the best communication tools to stay connected with your friends and make them a meaningful part of your care journey.
Use these tips to communicate with your friends about your caregiver journey:
- Be honest. You cannot expect your friends to understand what you are going through if you do not tell them. Even if one of your friends has gone through a similar experience, you cannot assume that they know what you are experiencing. Be honest and open with them so that they can be there for you, and can also understand why things might have shifted in your relationship.
- Avoid this being your only focus. When you are communicating with your friends, make sure that your care journey is not the only thing that you ever talk about. Maintaining your friendship means continuing to talk about the things that you always did before your care journey and remaining engaged and connected with them and their lives. This keeps the friendship meaningful and allows you to distance yourself, if only for a short time, from the struggles of your care journey.
- Do not belittle them. When communicating with your friends about your senior and your care journey, it is easy to think that they will not understand what your parent is facing or what you need to do for them. You might feel compelled to explain everything or go into too much detail in an effort to make them understand. This, however, can develop into your friends feeling belittled and disrespected. Avoiding talking down to them or going into extensive detail that is not meaningful for what you are trying to express. Talk to them with the same casual feeling and personal connection that you would about any other topic. If they need more explanation, they will ask for it.
If you have realized that the challenges of caring for your elderly parent during their later years have become too extensive for you to handle effectively, your abilities or availability have changed, or you simply feel that they would benefit from more diverse care, now may be the ideal time for you to consider home care for them. Having a care provider in the home with your senior loved one can not only help the to live a higher quality of life as they age in place, but can also be a tremendous source of stress relief and peace of mind for you. A care provider can handle tasks that you are not able to handle, that you or your parent are not comfortable with you handling, or that need specific efforts to handle effectively. They can also be with your parent on a customized schedule to ensure that even if you live at a distance or are unable to be with your parent as often as you would want to be, you know that your loved one is getting everything that they need. For many elderly adults, one of the most meaningful services that a care provider offers is companionship. This support and ongoing company gives your parent a boost in their mental and emotional health and helps them to find more fulfillment in their later years.
If you or an aging loved one are considering hiring a professional caregiver services in Loudoun County, VA, please contact the caring staff at LivinRite Home Care. Call Us Today at (703) 634-9991. Serving Northern Virginia, The Valley, and Surrounding Communities
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