When over 6,000 Canadian caregivers were asked to rate their stress levels, those caring for spouses ranked themselves higher on the stress scale than those caring for children or parents.
In fact, those caring for parents ranked themselves lowest. Reading other caregiver websites, I can tell you this is not always the case!
And there are exceptions to every rule.
Younger, employed persons found care giving more stressful in general with the pressures of the normal duties of work and home being compounded by the added duties of caring for someone.
While planning ahead is given as a stress-reliever, we all know from Kamla and Gemma’s articles that this is not always possible. These situations can descend on us in a moment and change our lives forever.
Other tips? Get informed not only about the illness the loved one has, but also about care giving. Find support groups and respite resources in your area. Take time to take care of yourself. Acknowledge your feelings. Ask others to help.
Accept that you are not always going to be happy in your situation. Once you do, dealing with those feelings will be easier.
In my experience? People of faith have an advantage in finding acceptance of their situation. As one spousal caregiver put it: Once I learned that I had to relinquish this control that I thought I had over our situation, to God, it took a lot of the pressure off.
This Caregiver’s Journal began in August of 2014. Although the first blog article was actually written on New Year’s Day, 2015, the rest are in chronological order from August 5th, 2014. What is written here has gone before.