The Challenges of Family Caregiving: How to Get Support from Relatives

stressed senior woman talking with family
Family caregiving is often a solo journey, but it doesn’t have to be. Learn how to get your loved ones involved and provide better care together.

If you’re in control of most of the care for elderly parents while your brothers and sisters distance themselves from helping, you are far from alone. In fact, half of all family caregivers are caring for an aging loved one alone, based on a recently available report from AARP.

Understanding why this circumstance is so commonplace – and discovering what you can do to safeguard your own personal health, which can easily be affected by caring for a senior loved one without any help – is imperative. Our aging care professionals have the answers.

  • Family members do not realize there is a need for assistance. It may very well be that from the outside looking in, you have everything under control and running smoothly, and are not in need of their assistance.

What you can do: Have a truthful, open discussion, outlining the stress you are under. Invite your sisters and brothers as well as other members of the family to visit during a time of higher intensity care needs, like when you are planning and preparing dinner and then helping the person get ready for bed. Then you can recruit their help so they are able to see firsthand how many tasks are involved.

  • They are afraid or uncomfortable. For a person who has never provided care for a senior loved one, it may be truly overwhelming.

What you can do: Encourage them to “shadow” you for a day to help increase confidence with the particular tasks that they are not comfortable with. A small amount of hands-on instruction can make a big difference.

  • They do not know what to do to help. Though it might seem like second nature to just jump in and meet the senior’s needs, that is not the case for everyone.

What you can do: Put together a list of particular tasks that you could use help with, along with the times and days that help and support are needed, and ask for volunteers.

How Can Home Care Help?

At Dakota Home Care, our experienced caregivers in Bismarck, Fargo, Lincoln, and Mandan, are always happy to work with you to meet the care needs of a senior loved one with professionalism, compassion, and reliability. Contact us at (877) 691-0015 and learn more about our in-home care services.

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