September 4, 2018
As a caregiver, some of the emotions you might experience could seem to show up out of nowhere. In reality, you’re often too busy to notice when they first start brewing.
Caregiving Involves All Sorts of Emotions
Until you step in as a caregiver to your aging adult, you may not realize just how that can impact your emotional health. You’ve got the stress of taking care of your elderly family member, but then you have all the other traditional stressors, too. You may also find that the very act of caring for your elderly family member can inspire some feelings that you never thought you’d experience.
What You Can Expect
There are a lot of positive and still overwhelming feelings you can experience as a caregiver, like gratitude. It can be incredibly humbling to be in the position to care for your senior at this stage of her life. You might also feel guilty, sad, and lonely while you’re a caregiver. These emotions are more likely to make you feel odd because they usually have negative connotations. You need to face your emotions without judgment so that you can deal with them appropriately.
Let Humor Back In
It’s really easy to let yourself get so overwhelmed as a caregiver that you forget that there are parts of life that are just funny. They may not be the typical situations in which you would think you’d be laughing, but they can still be humorous. It’s okay to laugh. It’s not a bad thing at all to find the humor around you and it can help you to balance out the rest of your feelings.
Find Supportive People to Talk To
Loneliness and isolation are extremely common for caregivers and they can leave you feeling as if there’s no one in the world who understands you. That isn’t the case, no matter how accurate it feels. Reach out to family members and to friends, if possible. If that isn’t possible, consider joining a caregiver support group so that you can meet other caregivers and share your experiences.
Taking care of yourself as a caregiver involves making sure that you’re doing as much for your emotional health as you are your physical health. If you need to take time away, hire senior care providers and step back for a bit. You’ll be better able to help your aging adult when you’ve got some perspective again.