Coretta Scott King stated, “The greatness of a community is most accurately measured by the compassionate actions of its members.”
Ms. King’s statement certainly describes most family Caregivers I know. They unquestionably contribute to the greatness of their community by their compassionate actions.
As we move closer to the end of the year, take a moment to consider and celebrate the contribution of friends and family members who care for loved-ones. Don’t just give a pat on the back. Offer help in concrete ways. Family Caregivers are certainly heroes, but not ‘Superhero’s (they can’t go on endlessly and never tire).
Usually, Caregivers are not complainers and are often reluctant to ask for help. Because of that, I thought I would offer a few suggestions that will provide concrete suggestions for those who are either a Caregiver or a Friend of one.
- Friend: provide a meal for someone who is caregiving.
- Caregiver: Accept/request a specific meal.
- Friend: Offer to sit with a loved one.
- Caregiver: Accept the offer for someone else to sit with or visit your loved one.
- Friend: Offer to run errands.
- Caregiver: Accept the offer and make a list.
- Friend: Clean/do laundry (even taking larger bedding to a laundromat).
- Caregiver: Accept the offer – you can’t do it all.
- Friend: Ask your friend specifically what you can do to help.
- Caregiver: Accept the help, answer honestly.
Some caregivers don’t ask for help because they don’t recognize when they need it. I came across a helpful article that may shed some light on the ‘asking for help’ issue. Caregivers asking for help – recognizing when you need it.
The following is a list of websites that can be helpful for both caregivers and seniors alike. Please let me know if there is any resource that I should consider adding to this list.
- 100+ Ways for Seniors to Save Money on Healthcare Costs
- AARP Online Community
- Alzheimer’s Association
- Assisted Living Research Institute
- ARCH National Respite Network and Resource Center
- Boomer’s Roadmap to Aging in Place
- Caregiver Action Network
- Caregiver Guide
- Eldercare Locator
- Everything about Bed Sores
- Family Caregiver Alliance
- Financial Resources for Seniors
- Fully Accessible Guide to Home Loans for People with Disabilities
- Guide to Senior Nutrition
- Hospice Foundation of America
- How to Start a Dialogue with Aging Parents
- Internet/Computer security for Seniors
- Legal Planning for Alzheimer’s and Dementia
- Moving To Assisted Living
- Medical Alert Systems
- Mesothelioma Caregivers
- Mesothelioma Center
- Move Planning for Seniors
- Moving Tips for Seniors
- National Clearinghouse for Long-term Care Information
- National Alliance for Caregiving
- National Institute on Aging Information Center
- Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect resource
- Power of attorney guide
- Planning for the Future for Seniors with Special Needs
- Retail Savings Guide for Baby Boomers
- Sleep Resources
- Senior Health Resources
- Senior Guidance
- Social Security Administration
- State Health Insurance Assistance Program
- State Laws and Nursing Facilities
- Veterans Administration Caregiver
- Veterans Benefits for Seniors
- Veterans Pension
- Well Spouse Association
Remember, you can’t do it all whether you are the caregiver or friend. Sometimes the best help may be a welcome visit that provides a temporary distraction.
Has your world been touched by dementia? My recent book, “FinishingWell: Finding Joy in the Journey”, is a collection of stories and tips about doing life with my Mama. May it encourage and inspire you to find the joy on your own, unique journey.
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Keep in mind that links can change. If you discover a broken link,please make me aware of if so I can fix it. Thank you.
Disclaimer: ThoughI check all links for reliability, I cannot personally vouch for each company listed. Please use wisdom as well as your own discretion when engaging with any of the resources listed above.