Family relationships last a lifetime, and eventually, as lifetimes progress, the tables turn: you start managing the caregiver responsibilities that your parent or loved one previously handled for you in childhood. This change in relationship dynamics can be challenging for everyone involved. Not only does the parent or loved one want to maintain independence, but supporting family members are also juggling other responsibilities in life with children, careers, and more.
This role reversal is necessary when the aging loved one can no longer keep up with life responsibilities on their own. Millions of people find themselves in situations where it is necessary to care for an aging loved one. Diminished physical and/or mental capacity affects daily activities, such as driving, meal planning, personal hygiene, and every other detail in life. At this point, family members must face the tough decision about the best way to arrange caregiving services for their loved ones.
Making the Decision: Caregiving Duties and Responsibilities
The decision to be a caregiver to a family member isn’t the right choice for every person. It takes a lot of time and effort to provide the level of care that your loved one so tenderly deserves, and it’s ok if you don’t have the availability to offer what this person needs throughout the day.
Instead of assuming that the only way to show your love is by being a caregiver to a parent or family member, recognize that you can make a promise to support them in other ways. For example, you can help your loved one stay at home safely by bringing in services from a caregiver agency. Not only does this provide the basic support that your loved one needs, but it also opens opportunities for the caregiver connect to supporting family members.
Another option is to move your loved one into an assisted living community where they can receive the support they require throughout the day. These communities include team members with specific caregiver training to provide the highest levels of care for their residents.
Caregiver Requirements and Choosing the Right Kind of Care
Once you make the decision that your loved one needs caregiving support, the next step is to choose the right kind of care. Whenever possible, it’s best to include the loved one in this decision so they can add their opinion and actively participate in developing their caregiving plan.
This open conversation gives you the opportunity to share a promise pending: you are always available to assist with the help of an outside provider. This verbal commitment reassures your family member of your promise for love while also honoring your personal needs and abilities. Bringing a caregiver into the home empowers your family to improve ongoing support, which positively impacts everyone involved.
The most important detail is to ensure that you hire someone with a caregiver license and proper caregiver training or choose a community that provides this care. If you bring a caregiver into your home, you need to have the confidence in knowing that you are inviting a knowledgeable, experienced and professional provider into your home. Interview each provider you are considering to ask about caregiver qualifications. Look for specific services based on your loved one’s needs, such as assistance for everyday tasks, memory care or skilled nursing needs.
Caregiver for Elderly: Making the Transition Easier
This transition from full independence to relying on caregivers can be a challenge for an elderly family member. Here are a few tips to help your family have a smooth transition:
- Be open to changes. By accepting the reality, you can experience more peace and compassion for your family member and their new caregivers.
- Ask for support. Remember that you don’t have to do it on your own. It is a courageous decision to ask for help when you don’t have the skills or time to provide the care your loved one needs.
- Stay involved: Just because you are hiring a caregiver for elderly doesn’t mean that you no longer have involvement in your loved one’s care. The best caregiver role you can take is to oversee the caregiving plan without taking over.
Protecting Your Parent’s Dignity
Look for a caregiver agency that prioritizes each individual’s dignity. When you are choosing a provider, look for specific caregiver qualities that protect their dignity, such as:
- Open communication
- Focus on maintaining independence when possible
- Control and choice in decisions
- Social inclusion
- Practical services
Small decisions throughout the day can help your loved one maintain a sense of dignity and control. For example, the caregiver should allow the person they are caring for to choose their own clothing and make appropriate decisions relating to their care.
Cadence Living Offers Dignified Caregiving
If you can see that a loved one needs support, then contact us to learn more about the available Cadence Living communities. We provide more than basic caregiver qualifications. Our team is committed to helping each and everyone of our residents and their family members.
Available services include assisted living, independent living, Cadence CONNECTIONS care, memory care, as well as social and physical wellness activities. Give us a call to talk to a caregiving expert and schedule a tour in one of our modern aging communities!