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Often those care giving for family members dealing with aging or other chronic illnesses beyond cancer contact me for tools and support.  Caregiving is caregiving…it doesn’t matter whether your loved one is dealing with the effects of cancer, Alzheimer’s, Multiple Sclerosis, heart disease or aging.

One of the major challenges caregivers may eventually face is having a loved one who is well enough to be living at home but can no longer do everything on their own.  Taking on full time care often leads to burnout for family members.  It can create incredible stress in the relationship with their loved one and on other areas of their lives.

Health, career, your immediate family or intimate relationships and your personal goals can suffer significantly if you have to set all these things aside and be a primary caregiver.  Often what stops caregivers from bringing in outside support is guilt over admitting they can’t do it all or fear that their loved one won’t receive quality care.

It is important to understand that adding a professional caregiver to the situation can, in the end, be the best thing for everyone.  It all comes down to doing your research and finding the right service provider.  A few questions to help you consider whether it is time to bring in a professional caregiver:

1.  Do you often find yourself exhausted, running low on patience and/or speaking in an abrupt, impatient manner with your loved one?

2.  Do you feel overwhelmed with time resources stretched to the maximum and like you’re being pulled in many different directions?

3.  Do you wonder when it will be your turn to be taken care of?

4.  Do you feel guilty if you take time for self-care or, worse yet, do you forget what self-care even looks like?

5.  When asking yourself how often are you able to exercise, eat healthy meals and have some fun in your week is your answer never, very seldom or not enough?

Did you say yes to one or more?

Now may be the time to consider getting some professional support.  If you’ve read My Story and my blog posts, you will know that I am a diligent researcher and believe in using top resources when it comes to resolving an issue.  I’ve reached out to Susan Dost (owner) and Jeromy Meyer (Director of Community Outreach and Client Services) from Sheridan Care, an award-winning provider, to help out.

Doing research is the best first step to addressing your concerns about this what’s next for your loved one when you’ve done all you can do on your own.  As a top provider of trained in home caregivers, Sheridan Care will share with us a list of top questions they recommend you ask when seeking the best match for your loved one’s needs in Wednesday’s post.


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