Being a caregiver isn’t an easy job, but you probably already know that. Caregiving can be the most rewarding, frustrating, uplifting, maddening, joyous, and overwhelming things you’ll ever do in your life. If you’re struggling with being a caregiver, one of the things that can be a source of comfort, advice, and understanding is a caregiver support group.
What is a Support Group?
A support group is a gathering of people who share the same issue, in this case, being a caregiver. Usually, the support group will be lead by a trained facilitator. Support groups may meet in person or online.
You may be able to locate a caregiver support group by contacting the local senior center, hospital, or by looking online. There may even be several available in your area, so you could have a choice of locations and times.
What Are the Benefits of a Support Group?
Joining a support group can help caregivers to avoid caregiver burnout and alleviate stress. They can also be a great place to share caregiving tips.
Some other benefits of joining a caregiver support group are:
Feel Less Alone: Being in a group of people who are in the same situation you are can help you feel less alone in the world. Sometimes it just helps to know that others understand what you’re going through.
A Place to Vent: A caregiver support group is a safe place to vent your feelings. These are people who “get it.” They have probably had many of the same feelings you have had about being a caregiver.
Refining Expectations: Listening other people’s stories can help you better identify your own expectations for life as a caregiver. Perhaps you think you have to do everything right or you’re failing; learning that others make mistakes, too, can help you change that expectation.
Improved Coping Skills: Being in a support group can help you to develop or improve your coping skills. Perhaps you’ll learn new techniques for managing stress. Or, you may gain a different perspective that makes coping a little easier.
Practical Advice: In a support group, caregivers can share information about assistance that may be available in the community, opinions about hospitals or clinics, and information about medical equipment. Members can also help one another learn more about being a caregiver, including specific tips for handling difficult situations.
If you haven’t tried a support group yet, you might be nervous about talking to a group of strangers. However, keep in mind that they are all there for the same reason you are—they are caregivers and they need help. You might be surprised how quickly they start to feel like trusted friends.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering elderly care in Rockridge, CA, call the caring staff at Aviva In-Home Care. Call today: (415) 795-2203
At Aviva, we also use the latest in health technology to maximize opportunities for communication between all members of our client’s care circles. We utilize nursing oversight to ensure that we are in compliance with physician orders, and that our careplans are being properly administered. Lastly, Aviva is a proud member of The Senior’s Choice, a national network of leading home care agencies that share best practices and focus on continual improvement.
As owner of the business, I also promise to you my direct involvement in your loved ones care, and will always make myself available for feedback and improvements in our service. I look forward to working with you and your loved one on creating a care plan that is perfectly suited to the family's needs. Thank you for considering Aviva as your care partner.