When you’re burned out and just don’t have it in you to keep providing the care your parents need, it’s okay. It’s not that you’re a terrible person. Family caregivers have one of the most challenging roles, and it’s not an easy role to maintain for months or years.
Stress Management Isn’t Easy for Everyone
Managing stress isn’t a skill that every person excels at. Those who are successful tend to lean towards exercise programs like walking, yoga, and aerobics. If you’re not accustomed to these routines, it can seem impossible to handle excessive amounts of stress.
It’s Hard to Say No
It can be hard to say no to your parents. They want you to cook meals, help them with housework, and drive them around. You don’t want to say no, but you’re figuring out how to balance all of that with your full-time job. You also have children at home, a household of your own to manage, and a need to be social with your friends.
Balancing the care your parents need with your own activities is challenging. Yet, you don’t want to say no to them. That becomes stressful.
Parenting a Parent Is Tough
Family caregivers end up in a role where they become a parental figure to their parents. They’re the ones reminding their parents to take medications, get showered and dressed, and accompanying them to appointments. When you’re parenting your parent, the role reversal is stressful.
Family Caregivers Often Don’t Know Where to Turn for Support
Some chronic conditions require 24/7 care. If your mom has Alzheimer’s, you’re never off-duty unless someone else steps in while you sleep or take a day off. It can be hard to know where to turn for help. You call the local agency on aging, and they refer you to someone else.
The more you get sent to another agency, the more likely it is that you’ll stop asking. Don’t give up. Reach out to an expert in home care to get the answers you need and to arrange caregiver visits.
Use 24-Hour Home Care to Get the Break You Need
When you’re burning out, it’s best for everyone to admit you need help. With 24-hour home care aides, you can take a break for as long as is needed. Caregivers are with your parents to ensure they’re never left alone.
Use 24-hour home care to take breaks from being a family caregiver. When you’re ready to resume your role, you can step back into your duties as a family caregiver. But, make sure you keep taking breaks to prevent caregiver burnout from occurring again.