Help For Care­givers

Women's Weekly (Malaysia) - - Women Share -

Care­giv­ing re­spon­si­bil­i­ties usu­ally fall on the women in the fam­ily, and can cause feel­ings of help­less­ness, hope­less­ness, lone­li­ness and fa­tigue, says psy­chol­o­gist Daniel Koh from In­sights Mind Cen­tre.

So what do you do if you’re the one who’s left with car­ing for your par­ents? “En­gage help,” says Daniel. “If it can help you be more ef­fec­tive and recharge, it is valu­able to you and your loved ones,” he says.

Fe­male care­givers of­ten ex­pe­ri­ence spe­cific strug­gles like feel­ings of em­bar­rass­ment when show­er­ing their fa­thers, car­ry­ing wheel­chair-bound par­ents, and not hav­ing enough emo­tional sup­port or un­der­stand­ing from fam­ily mem­bers. Here are some ways to help re­lieve the pres­sure if you’re car­ing for your par­ents alone.

CRE­ATE POCK­ETS OF TIME FOR REST

You are en­ti­tled to rest, so do not feel guilty about it. Have time to your­self while your par­ent naps, and pick up sim­ple hob­bies to de-stress.

VOICE YOUR FRUS­TRA­TIONS

If you keep quiet, oth­ers may think you’re do­ing ok, says Daniel. In­stead of com­plain­ing, sit to­gether and ask to dis­cuss solutions. You can also vent frus­tra­tions by writ­ing down your feel­ings, and find­ing sup­port groups for in­for­ma­tion.

BUILD A STRONG BOND WITH YOUR PAR­ENTS

Be there for them and fo­cus on the pos­i­tive, even if they may not al­ways show grat­i­tude.

SIGN UP FOR RESPITE CARE SER­VICES

Hospis Malaysia ( www.hos­pis­malaysia.org) or­gan­ises reg­u­lar care­givers' work­shops on ba­sic care­giv­ing and nurs­ing skills to help care­givers bet­ter man­age the symp­toms and ef­fects of a pa­tient’s ill­ness at home. Try also the De­part­ment of Wel­fare's se­nior ci­ti­zen's day cen­tres and home-based respite care ser­vices. For more de­tails, log on to www.jkm.gov.my.

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