Caregiving coping skills

Since: Aug 10

Danville, KY

#1 Aug 3, 2010
How do you get the elderly to know their limits? Or do they have to find out the hard way. We strive to prevent these sweet souls from harm or injury. But they want to be as independent a they can be. and that is good . But can we get them to deal with life realistically?

“Winchester Model 1894”

Since: Apr 07

Roy, Washington

#2 Aug 3, 2010
My mother-in-law got to the point where she couldn't care for herself properly, so the family hired a live in care giver, she quit. So the family chose to take on the task ourselves, we would take turns staying with her, cooking, cleaning, etc. That didn't work either. So we put her in a nursing home. That gave the family a break and we all felt guilty, but she was such a hard nosed, miserable old bat. It's no wonder she'd been married 3 times.
cicero

Nampa, ID

#3 Aug 3, 2010
cecemoore wrote:
How do you get the elderly to know their limits? Or do they have to find out the hard way. We strive to prevent these sweet souls from harm or injury. But they want to be as independent a they can be. and that is good . But can we get them to deal with life realistically?
they don't have that much time left. let them do what they want.

“The Bible does not say that ..”

Since: Aug 10

Location hidden

#5 Aug 3, 2010
cecemoore wrote:
How do you get the elderly to know their limits? Or do they have to find out the hard way. We strive to prevent these sweet souls from harm or injury. But they want to be as independent a they can be. and that is good . But can we get them to deal with life realistically?
You recognise the difficulties surrounding those that seek to care for the elderly. The first skill required to take care of the elderly is for the would-be caregiver understanding the nature of old age from the elderly side. Old people, in general, have firm ideas about how they want their lives played out. Care givers that cannot come to terms with the the desires, hopes, wishes, likes and dislikes of the elderly will never succeed.

Old people might seem childish to a person unsympathetic to their individualism and pride, but making it a battle will demean the aged person, embitter the care giver, and create hostilities and tensions that will last for the rest of the elder's unhappy life.

Understanding geriatrics is a life skill that must be approached academically, rather than emotionally. otherwise the result is failure.

I am in advanced years, and am also a caregiver for my elderly and sick wife. We have children that are well meaning, supportive, and,loving. But from time to time they drop an 'idea' onto the table that suggests we are incapable of caring for ourselves, physically, mentally, spiritually, and financially.

We don't want to hurt their feelings, but we are not yet ready for the annex to the charnel house and so politely decline their well intentioned suggestions. We will continue to do so until we are overtaken by events and can no longer care for ourselves. However, provided that one of us still has a few optimally firing neurons in the upper stories we shall resist having others determine our fates and micromanaging our affairs.

You have to come to terms with their rights as free individuals with years of experience and collective wisdom and, as far as is possible, accede to their requests to be let alone to conduct their own affairs.

The secret is to be watchful but not prescriptive. it's tough to get this level of skill,. but it's even tougher being old and having people think because you are doddery that you have reverted to infancy.

Take a course on geriatrics or at the very least read a technical book written by an eminent geriatrician to learn what old age is like, and what old people are like, and stem your kind impulses to save them from themselves. the day might come when your more hands-on assistance is needed, and requested.

Until that happens, if it does, let them retain their dignity and freedom to choose what to do, how to do it, and when to do it.

They are still your parents and you must avoid trying to reverse roles and make them your children. it's a toughie, but love must override your anxieties, and good sense prevail in place of your need to save these people from themselves.

Good luck, but luck has less to do with success in this field than knowledge and wisdom.

“The Bible does not say that ..”

Since: Aug 10

Location hidden

#6 Aug 3, 2010
MPMARTIN wrote:
My mother-in-law got to the point where she couldn't care for herself properly, so the family hired a live in care giver, she quit. So the family chose to take on the task ourselves, we would take turns staying with her, cooking, cleaning, etc. That didn't work either. So we put her in a nursing home. That gave the family a break and we all felt guilty, but she was such a hard nosed, miserable old bat. It's no wonder she'd been married 3 times.
Perhaps when you get to her age and your children start farming you out you might just feel like standing up for yourself against the puerile ingrates.
Pretty Feet

Philadelphia, PA

#7 Aug 4, 2010
Professor Christos wrote:
<quoted text>
Perhaps when you get to her age and your children start farming you out you might just feel like standing up for yourself against the puerile ingrates.
all of what u have to say makes sense, but i have a feeling this person was talking about the old person who is not capable of making a rash decision anymore. and the worse part of that is that they themselves don't realize it, they think things are just fine.
the worse thing in the world is "having" to take over decisions for ur parents. u become the parent to them now. as the child u want to always think ur parents will be there for u and then u realize thats not always the case. u get to the point where u know for sure that u have to take care of them and make decisions that they will not like or even understand.(example - taking the car away when u know they shouldnt be driving anymore)
its heartbreaking for that person to do so, but it Must be done for the good of their parent and others around them. And i might add If ur lucky enough and have good, caring and loving kids, they Will do what they know is right. they will "help" u live the rest of ur life in the best, "safest" way possible.

its frustrating for all concerned, as a daughter i know this, as an aging mom i also know whats to come..
i think i now have an understanding and empathy for both situations.
:O)
Pretty Feet

Philadelphia, PA

#8 Aug 4, 2010
MPMARTIN wrote:
My mother-in-law got to the point where she couldn't care for herself properly, so the family hired a live in care giver, she quit. So the family chose to take on the task ourselves, we would take turns staying with her, cooking, cleaning, etc. That didn't work either. So we put her in a nursing home. That gave the family a break and we all felt guilty, but she was such a hard nosed, miserable old bat. It's no wonder she'd been married 3 times.
someone once told me that if ur a nasty young person, u will become a nasty person 10 times worse when u are old..
maybe he was right huh?
lol

but sounds like u guys did ur best to help and for that u can pat urself on the back and not feel guilty. u guys were there for her and thats says it All about what kind of caring person u are.
:O)

Since: Sep 13

Kansas City, MO

#9 Mar 21, 2014
Caregiving is a big responsibility to take since it requires your full attention, patience, understanding and a great deal of energy too. Sometimes this can lead to stress and if you don't do something about it right away, then it becomes detrimental to your health. So here are 7 ways on how to relieve stress brought about by caregiving and I hope a lot of caregivers will find this helpful.

http://www.ltcoptions.com/7-ways-to-bust-care...

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