A caregiver support group is one place you can go to find people who understand what you’re going through. However, it does take effort to make it to a support group, and you may find yourself wondering if it’s even worth all the trouble to arrange for respite care. These four benefits of joining a support group for caregivers can help you understand just how important it is to reach out and connect with others.
1. Learn New Caregiving Strategies
Family caregivers are constantly needing to find ways to change how they do things. Whether you’re having difficulty figuring out how to keep the house clean or you need to identify a way to help your senior loved one manage personal hygiene, you can be confident another caregiver has been in your shoes before. During support group meetings, it’s common to encounter both brand-new and experienced caregivers with great ideas to share that can make your daily routine easier to manage.
2. Give Your Loved One a Break
Caregivers need regular breaks from their duties, and going to a support group allows you to do so without feeling guilty about taking time off. However, you should also know your loved one benefits from having time away from you as well. Enlisting the help of a professional caregiver allows you and your loved one to avoid spending too much time together, which can lead to tension building up. Your loved one also gains a sense of independence from having someone else visit for a chat, and talking to different people provides the relaxation that comes from socializing. One of the best things you can for yourself and your loved one is reach out for assistance from a professional experienced in senior care. El Cajon family caregivers can benefit from help a few hours a day or a few days a month to step away and focus on self-care.
3. Understand Your Feelings Are Normal
As a caregiver, you may suddenly find yourself wanting to lash out in frustration at your loved one for something he or she cannot help. You may sometimes feel resentful about having to manage all your duties when others won’t. You may also find yourself trying to overcome anger at your loved one stemming from your past relationship. You may even feel guilty about wanting to take time off from caring for your loved one. All these feelings can be uncomfortable, and they can lead to further guilt as well as caregiver burnout if they’re not addressed. In your support group, you’ll get the opportunity to vent these emotions so they don’t begin to affect your mental health. You’ll also benefit from finding out that many other people feel this way from time to time. Just knowing you’re not alone may help you feel emotionally strong.
4. Expand Your Support Network
Hopefully, you already have some people, including professional home caregivers, who can step in and provide assistance with your duties when you need the help. Now it’s time to build a circle of friends who can provide you with support when you experience a new challenge. Many support groups lead to new friendships. Being able to connect with another caregiver on the phone or through text messages during the day lets you know support is never far away.
If you sometimes feel overwhelmed by your caregiving responsibilities, a support group can be a wonderful source of advice and encouragement. In addition to joining a support group, it may be time to enlist the help of a trusted professional caregiver. Whether they need assistance a few hours a day, a few days a week, or around-the-clock Alzheimer’s or dementia home care, El Cajon families rely on the highly trained, devoted caregivers from Coast Care Partners. Reach out to one of our friendly representatives today at 619-354-2544 to discover how we can help.