WHAT IS A FAMILY CAREGIVER?
A family caregiver is an unpaid person who
cares for relatives or loved ones. They may be
caring for members of their family, close friends
At some point in our lives many of us will
become a family caregiver. Your caregiving
journey may be due to a sudden accident or
perhaps an illness that has reached the point that
your care is needed. Whatever the case may be,
the road ahead for you, the caregiver, and your
loved one will be smoother if you understand
the basics of good caregiving. Below you will
find the 3 Rules For Being a Good Caregiver. This
will get you started. Go to PolkElderCare.com to
continue the journey.
RULE NUMBER 1 FOR BEING A
GOOD CAREGIVER: IT IS OK TO
ASK FOR HELP
As a matter of fact, it is the best thing you
can do for both your loved one and yourself.
Everything else is secondary. Do not feel guilty,
or like you have failed if you need assistance.
Burnout can happen if you don’t get help. One
of the greatest gifts you can give the one you are
caring for is the gift of not feeling like they are a
burden. Many times care recipients experience
guilt about receiving care. “Because of me, she
doesn’t get out and do anything fun anymore.”
If you want the one that you are caring for to be
happy, ask for help.
We Understand That
No one can take care of your loved one like you
can. YOU KNOW the “schedule” for medicines,
appointments and when the best time to eat is.
YOU KNOW how she likes her covers tucked in,
what the temperature in the house should be, or
how he likes his oatmeal. It is true that no one
will be able to do it exactly like you do, but after
awhile, if you don’t get help, you won’t be able to
do it like you used to, either.
Sources of Help
Family and Friends
Rely on your family and friends. If you have
family and friends who can and are willing to help,
then you need to spread the love and make them
a part of the care process. Ask them to do specific
things to help you. Many times people are willing
to help, but they don’t know what to do. Ask
someone to make a pan of their favorite lasagna
that mom likes so much. It will make them feel
good that they can help out. When they come
over to deliver the meal maybe everyone can
sit down and enjoy it together. There is nothing
better to bring people together than a good meal.
Caring for the
The information in the Family Caregiver
section of this guide is designed to help those
who are family caregivers or are just beginning
the caregiving journey. It is a starting point &
intended to help lead you to the information
& support you need. Much more detailed
information is available on our website at
PolkElderCare.com with phone numbers, links
& downloads of tips, checklists & worksheets.
• What is a Family Caregiver?
• 3 Rules for Being a Good Caregiver:
• It Is OK To Ask For Help
• Take Care of Yourself
• Learn As Much As You Can