Being a family caregiver can sometimes feel as if there’s a marathon and there’s just no stopping. That doesn’t have to be the case, however. Caregiving is a long march, for sure, and it’s both physically and emotionally demanding. But family caregivers have to take some time away now and again, or they’re going to risk burnout. Working with home care providers can be an excellent way for family caregivers to take the respite time that they need.
Why Is Respite Time So Difficult?
Some of the challenges family caregivers face in taking respite time are more surmountable than others. It’s possible that family caregivers are totally alone in their tasks, and don’t have anyone that they can delegate duties to. They may also have a lot of guilt or fear around taking time away from their aging family members. Not knowing where to go to get help is another big concern. Some family caregivers feel as if they just need to keep going, no matter what.
Acknowledge Why Self-care Is Important
Acknowledging that self-care is important can be the first step for family caregivers. What this means is that family caregivers need to remember that they are an important part of the caregiving process. If they’re not taking care of themselves, they won’t be able to be there for the people they love.
Start Building a Support Network
Having a support network is crucial. That might include friends and family members who can step in occasionally, but it should also include elder care providers whenever possible. Finding home care providers to trust can open up a lot of different avenues of support that help the senior who needs care as well as the family caregiver.
Establish Boundaries Around Caregiving
Having strong boundaries isn’t a bad thing at all. In fact, boundaries help family caregivers to carve out respite time for themselves. These boundaries don’t have to be mean or harsh at all. They’re as simple as being honest with others about their needs so that they can advocate for respite time when they need it most.
Make Plans for Respite Time
It’s a lot easier to brush off something like respite time when there’s nothing planned for that time. Family caregivers should make some specific plans for that time away, knowing what they’re going to do. There are all sorts of ways to take advantage of respite time. Family caregivers might schedule their own doctors’ appointments, take a nap, or do anything else that is totally unrelated to caregiving.
Ease Into Taking Respite Time Regularly
Taking respite time regularly won’t necessarily feel easy or even right at first. Family caregivers can benefit from easing into it, especially if they’re dealing with a lot of emotions like guilt and fear. Starting out with respite time once a month and then gradually increasing to weekly respite can make a difference.
Family caregivers cannot afford to ignore something as important as respite time. It’s an essential part of healthy caregiving. Finding home care providers to trust helps immensely and is easier than family caregivers worry it might be.
If you or an aging loved one are considering non-medical in-home care in Scarsdale and Yonkers, NY, call Griswold Home Care
and speak to one of our caring staff members today. Call (914) 768-9065