Should You Be the Primary Caregiver for Your Aging Loved One?
There is much more to being a primary caregiver than being willing or feeling that you ought to do so. If your aging parent or loved one has declined to the point of needing in-home assistance, you may not be the best person to adequately address their specific needs, despite your willingness or sense of obligation to do so.
If you are alone in your role as a caregiver or do not have the extra support you need, call At Home Support at (877) 959-9093 today.
Many daughters and eldest siblings often assume the burden of care for loved ones, even if they are not the best person for the job. However, such assumptions can force even the most ill-suited caregivers to the front of the pack, which is bad for the caregiver and bad for the elder in question. When deciding whether you should be the primary caregiver, there are a few questions you should ask yourself:
How Is Your Relationship with the Caree?
Being a primary caregiver doesn’t only mean housing, feeding, and transporting your family member. It means spending the majority of your lives together and a lot of hard work on your part to ensure their quality of life. If you and your aging parent or other elderly loved one do not have a healthy, loving relationship, you may not be the best person for the job. It can add great stress to your life and significant discomfort to your loved one’s life if the two of you do not get along or do not enjoy one another’s company.
What Skills Do You Bring to the Table?
If you are comfortable managing another person’s healthcare, finances, living situation, transportation, schedule, etc., you may be suited for the role of primary caregiver. However, if you find that your strong suits do not include managing money, time, or people, you may be overwhelmed by the responsibilities of being a primary caregiver. You may sincerely want to do those things and desire to do them well for the benefit of your loved one, but it may be to their greater benefit if you delegate their care to someone who is more inclined to meet the specific demands of caregiving.
Are You Emotionally Stable Enough to Be a Primary Caregiver?
Emotional stability, resilience, and patience are key. If you tend to fly off the handle, so to speak, and are not very patient, caregiving may be incredibly frustrating for you, especially as your loved one declines with age and their needs begin to grow. It may also create a somewhat stressful environment for your aging loved one if they are fearful of your impatience or reactivity in stressful situations.
How to Decline the Role of Primary Caregiver
You may love your parent or aging family member deeply but still not be able to provide the level of care they need to live a full, happy life in your home. The best way to talk to about this with other supporting family members, such as siblings, is to be honest with them about your doubts that you are the best person for the job.
When bringing this up with other family members, it may be best to frame it as a transition from providing one form of care to another. It may prove effective to emphasize ways in which you might better serve your loved one, such as helping with regular outings or taking them to doctor appointments. Discussing other care arrangements with family members can help alleviate the burden of primary caregiving and place you in a role that allows you to better serve your aging family member.
Call At Home Support for Extra Assistance Caring for an Aging Loved One
Our team of experienced, compassionate caregivers has been serving our friends and neighbors in Texas for years, and we know all about providing quality, personalized care to seniors and their families. We can also provide respite care for family caregivers, in order to alleviate the pressure of doing it all yourself. If you are in need of some extra help in caring for a loved one, reach out to a member of our team today.
Call At Home Support at (877) 959-9093 to speak to a member of our team today.