How to Keep Up with Your Friends and Family as a Family Caregiver
June 17, 2016
Caregiver in Robinson Twp.
If you’ve been a caregiver for any length of time, you probably know that friends and other family members can find it tough to spend as much time with you as they’d like. You might even feel detached from the people that you love and that can just add stress.
Schedule it In
The first thing that you can do when you’re trying to keep in touch with your friends and family is to actually put that time in your schedule as an appointment. If you can do that, you’re more likely to see that time as something important that you have to make time to do. If you’re worried that your loved one will need you during those times, work with your loved one’s elderly care providers or other family members to provide care while you’re occupied.
Keep Yourself Accountable
It’s really easy to make excuses for avoiding friends and family members when you’re a family caregiver. You may not even realize that what you’re giving is an excuse because it’s most likely true. You’re probably tired, feeling emotional, or simply unwilling to be around people for a little while. However, if you let yourself off the hook every time, you’ll never meet up with your friends and family. Do what you can to stick to appointments once you make them.
Let People Know When You’re Available
Sometimes people don’t call, text, or try to visit with you simply because they never know when you’re available. Of course, that can change at any moment depending on your own needs and your loved one’s needs. Do what you can to let people know when you’re most likely to be available. You might post a status to Facebook letting people know that you’re available for phone calls in the late afternoon, for example, because that’s when your loved one naps. Once you let people know, they can initiate contact with you.
Explore Other Ways to Keep in Touch
Maybe phone calls and getting together for coffee isn’t possible right now for a lot of reasons. That doesn’t mean that you have to go off the map altogether. Try sending letters to the people that you love. You could even keep it simpler and send cards to let people know that you’re thinking of them. Explore different ways to stay in contact and then when your situation changes again, you can adapt.