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Super Social Butterfly

Re: Caregiver support

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@CarolineS478343 Hi Carol! So glad you reached out. It really is tough to juggle all the work, caregiving and the rest of our lives - I am also a working caregiver (my Dad is 94 and lives with me - he has Alzheimer's) and unless you are living it, it really is hard to imagine the stress. 

 

So good you are reaching out! Be aware of the stress and need for support is half the battle! Glad Jen referred you to a caregiver support group - most caregivers say that helps the most! There are also online support groups if that's easier for you. 

 

Does your company offer any flexible work options to free up some of your time? For example:

 

  • Could you work 4 longer days and have the 5th day off every week, or longer days for 9 days and off on the 10th (often called a compressed work week)? 
  • Is telecommuting an option at all? Now and then as needed, a regular schedule (such as telecommuting one day a week or month etc.)? Telecommuting will save you time commuting.
  • Is your boss and/or your human resources dept aware of your situation? It might be helpful so they don't assume you are just distracted, not dedicated or committed to your job - if they know what you're facing sometimes they are more understanding. (for others it doesn't help, so use your judgement of course!) You an also ask them about any other flexibility or support that might be helpful to you.
  • Some people cut back to part time when caregiving, or job share, but I know you said you need to work so I'm not sure if that's an option for you. 

Honestly the hardest thing for me to work in is time for myself, are you like me?! I find it helps to literally schedule it on my calendar (time for a walk, time with a friend, sleep, exercise, a massage, movie etc.) - otherwise it just doesn't happen with so many demands on our time!

 

I'd love to help you with any specific suggestions, and there is more great info on the AARP Caregiving website at www.aarp.org/caregiving and in my book, Juggling Life, Work and Caregiving. Please feel free to message me or reply to this post with any specifics you can share! 

 

You can do this, I know you can. Sometimes you may feel like you can't do it anymore - I certainly have those moments! That's when I'm overwhelmed I stop and get organized and evaluate everything on my to do lists for work, Dad, home, personal etc. One of my biggest learnings is that I can do anything - but I can't do everything! 

 

So I try to look at my lists and find things that others can do - usually it's help for me because I need to do so many things for Dad - so I found a concierge who can help me with errands, shopping, dry cleaning etc. I got help for my yard. I got a housecleaning. All of those things cost less than paying for a caregiver for Dad! Friends and family are great for this too - they want to help but don't know what to do. They can mow your grass, sort your mail, run errands etc. even if they can't help directly with the caregiving. 

 

I hope this gives you some ideas!  

 

Take care,

Amy Goyer, AARP Family & Caregiving Expert 

Author, Juggling Life, Work and Caregiving

 

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Jen
Frequent Social Butterfly

Re: Caregiver support

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CarolineS478343 wrote:

Hello,

My name is Carol live in Frederick County MD. and I am caring for my late husband's mom who I love dearly. She is 97 years old and doing very well for her age but latley caring for her has become more of a struggle and I feel like i could benefit from a local support group.

I am begining to feel like trying to have the work/caregiver balance is becoming a big obstacle for me and have no time for myself. What I am most concerned with it is now affecting my work and can not afford to not work.

Just looking for direction, thanks


Hi CarolineS,

Do you live in Frederick County as well? I found a Caregiver Support Group in that county. 

 

Here is some info:

Support Group


This group is for caregivers of people 60 years of age or older or with an early onset of dementia. It meets the last Wednesday of each month from 1:30-2:30 p.m. at the Frederick Senior Center. It is facilitated by Edi Stewart, LCSW-C. Please contact the Caregiver Program Coordinators if you have questions. Can't make our support group? We are happy to provide a listing of other area groups.

 

You can contact them at this number: Ph: 301-600-1605

 

Here is the site that I found. 

 

Balancing Work and Caregiving is tough. I've asked our Family Caregiving Expert, Amy Goyer, who wrote a book on just this, to weigh in and provide some support/tips to you. In the meantime, HERE is a good blog she wrote about the topic.

 

Please let me know if this is helpful at all to you. 

 

Please keep us posted. 

AARPJen
Caregiving Concierge
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Info Seeker

Caregiver support

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Hello,

My name is Carol live in Frederick County MD. and I am caring for my late husband's mom who I love dearly. She is 97 years old and doing very well for her age but latley caring for her has become more of a struggle and I feel like i could benefit from a local support group.

I am begining to feel like trying to have the work/caregiver balance is becoming a big obstacle for me and have no time for myself. What I am most concerned with it is now affecting my work and can not afford to not work.

Just looking for direction, thanks

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