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Caregiver Support

Caregiving for an aging loved one can be very rewarding. It can also feel taxing and sometimes overwhelming. The role of caregiver may come naturally to you, or it may not. You may find yourself caring for someone you have an easy relationship with or you may be caring for someone you really don't want to be around. Regardless of your particular relationship with caregiving or with the person you're caring for, getting support makes a big difference. You might start with getting help from friends and family or joining a support group. Eventually though, you might be feeling enough overwhelm or anticipatory grief, that talking to a professional may be what you need. How do you know when you need to seek professional help? It really depends on you, but there are signs to consider.


Here are some signs that caregiving is becoming unmanageable:


  • You feel tired all the time. 

  • You keep needing to fight back tears.

  • You’re having a hard time sleeping.

  • You’re not taking care of yourself as well as you used to. 

  • You often feel frustrated.

  • Your other relationships are suffering.

  • Your professional life is suffering. 

  • You’re feeling sad and/or angry.

  • You’re feeling anxious.

  • You're forgetting things.

  • You feel numb.

  • You’re wishing someone would notice how hard you’re working.

  • You’re wishing someone would offer you help.

  • You’re feeling guilty, like you’re not capable or not doing enough.

  • You feel panic about what you'll do when your person dies.

If the above list resonates with you, please know you are not alone. It's absolutely normal to become overwhelmed when caregiving for a loved one. For a robust list of various kinds of support, including links to caregiver support groups, please check out my blog post on Caregiver Support.

If you want to explore the ways therapy can help you in your caregiving journey, read on!

How do you know if therapy would be a benefit to you? Here are some of the things a therapist can help with: 


  • Explore shifting roles between you and the person you’re caring for, especially if it’s a parent

  • Learn to identify and attend to your own needs while you’re simultaneously taking care of someone else

  • Learn how to set boundaries for sustainable care

  • Learn how to establish self-care routines for ongoing stamina 

  • Practice being vulnerable and asking for help

  • Teach others how you’d like to be appreciated

  • Explore how to relax into what’s happening instead of adding to the suffering by fighting it 

  • Learn how to communicate with friends and family, and to cope with those who don’t get it and won’t help

  • Learn how to support yourself if you’re feeling guilt for not doing enough

  • Explore how to achieve balance in this intense time

  • Explore the ways you can be a boon companion to the person you’re caring for

  • Explore how to acknowledge any anticipatory grief you may feel around your own expectations, sacrifices and contemplation of the death of the person you’re supporting.

  • Help with gently exploring what your life will be like after your loved one dies


If you’re a caregiver and would like to talk more about counseling, please reach out to me. I’m here to answer any questions you may have. ❧

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