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I cannot even imagine where I would be today

were it not for the handful of friends who have given

me a heart full of joy. - Charles R. Swindoll


Caregiving is probably only one of the many conflicting demands on your time. It is important to set realistic goals. Recognize what you can and cannot do, define your priorities, and act accordingly.

STRESS MANAGEMENT STRATEGY #7: ACCEPT HELP FROM OTHERS Many of us have other people involved in our lives who are willing to help such as family, friends, and neighbors. Turning to family members or friends for emotional support and help can be a mixed blessing. Their visits may make you feel less alone and better able to deal with caregiving responsibilities. They can give you a break by spending time with your carereceiver. One suggestion would be to prepare a list of tasks for anyone who may offer assistance. The list might include: - - - -

running an errand for you, preparing a meal,

taking your carereceiver for a ride, taking your children after school one day.

However, other relatives or friends can be critical of the way you provide care. They may feel the house is not kept clean enough; or they may not like the way your carereceiver is dressed. Recognize that they are responding to what they see at that time and are lacking the benefit of experiencing the whole picture and any gradual changes in your carereceiver's condition. Harsh criticism may be a response to their own guilt about not participating more in the care process. Try to listen politely to what is being said (even though this might not be easy). However, if you and your carereceiver feel comfortable with the way you are managing the situation, continue to do what meets your needs. Schedule a family meeting from time to time to help other family members understand the situation and to involve them in sharing the responsibilities for caregiving.

Some information adapted from:

We are each of us angels with only one wing, and we can only fly by embracing one another.

- Luciano de Crescenzo

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