Burned Out Caregivers: Respite Is Possible For You

Please Share

Respite: A Gift You Give Yourself

By CAROLYN ROSENBLATT, R.N, BSN, Attorney

Millions of caregivers throughout our country are putting in long hours, putting up with very difficult circumstances, including difficult aging loved ones, and have little or no relief. If you don’t have much money to spare, how can you get a break? Do you dare give yourself one?

Consider giving yourself the gift of respite, or rest, temporarily, from your caregiving duties. If you are able to manage it financially, many senior living facilities offer short term care for an elder so that family caregivers can take a break, get away, or just have freedom from the responsibility for a bit. Often, the senior living facility will care for your elder for a weekend, or a week,, without further obligation to move in or sign on for any other services. A nice place to stay, meals, socialization and sometimes special events are all made available to the elder. You pay by the day, or weekend, or week, according to how the facility creates respite care for those who do not live full time in the facility.

The same kind of respite care may be available at long term care (nursing care) facilities, and adult day health services, if these are in your area. The cost is often reasonable, though it varies a great deal among states and regions. It is certainly worth asking about. If you are a caregiver, either part time or full time, you deserve a vacation now and then, just as everyone does from any other job. Find a way to take it, and there is no need for guilty feelings.

If you don’t have the money to pay for respite care at a facility, it is possible to apply for a grant. The Alzheimer’s Foundation of America, part of the Alzheimer’s Association, makes a limited number of Family Respite Care Grants available for families who are caring for loved ones with Alzheimer’s disease or a related dementia. There are application deadlines in spring and fall. See www.alzfdn.org for details. Not everyone who applies gets the grant, but it is certainly worth a try.

If you can’t get a grant, or the wait to see if you get it is too long, consider using networks of support that other caregivers are using: church or religious groups, volunteer organizations or family and friends. Arranging in advance for a rest for yourself can be done. You’ll need to think it through, do your research, set up a time on your calendar, and then, do it! Others may not offer to give you a break, but may be very willing to do so if you ask. If you normally get holiday gifts from family, why not ask for the funds to get respite care instead?

While no one can take care of an aging loved one the way you can, others are quite capable of giving you some relief. If your own family is unable or unwilling to give you a rest from your duties, go outside the family in every way possible. This may take some work, but it’s worth the effort. If you need to give yourself an excuse because you feel you “should” be available non-stop for an aging loved one, think about loving yourself enough to allow a rest. A break can recharge your batteries and help you keep going on the journey ahead.

Ó 2009, AgingParents.com, Carolyn L. Rosenblatt, R.N., B.S.N., Attorney

Tiny URL for this post:
 

Please Share
JUST RELEASED “The Family Guide To Aging Parents”
Stack Of CashCheck out our latest website: AgingInvestor.com click HERE to learn more
FREE Report: “One Critical Step You Must Take To Avoid Your Aging Parents Debts”
CLICK on the image Below
Testimonials by our readers
"Thank you for the article on the "grey area". It validated what I am currently going through with my Mother. It is so painful for me to go back and forth with her behavior. I just don't know what to do about the estranged sister who has exploited well over $50K of my mother's savings and my Mothers admitted " lack of "will power" to say no to her." Robert ________________________________ "I do want to thank you for the Webinar you offered. It helped me a great deal as I was facing the need to lead our family in finding a safe living situation for our mother. That information and the other information you offered as downloads gave me much needed guidance when I was feeling tremendous anxiety and uncertainty." Betty
FREE Report: 10 Warning Signs Your Aging Parent Needs Help With Money
Get Quick Tips – Newsletter FREE…. Just CLICK Below
Categories
Archives
  • What To Do When Medicare Screws Up Your Aging Parent’s Bill August 21, 2017
    Most of our aging parents receive Medicare, which is supposed to pay “covered medical costs”. And for the most part, it does. But then there are the mistakes. Are your aging parents helpless when Medicare refuses to pay for something that…Read more ›
    Mikol Davis
  • Nip A Predator’s Scheme In The Bud — Stop Your Aging Parent From Becoming Prey July 12, 2017
    Rhonda is a 91-year-old widow and lives independently. She has a few million in investments and has planned well for retirement. Her two sons are busy and leave her to make decisions about her money independently. What Rhonda’s sons didn’t…Read more ›
    Mikol Davis
  • Intrusion or Just Being Safe? Monitoring Aging Parents’ Finances June 13, 2017
    For most adult children with aging parents, there is often the dilemma of whether or not they should be involved with monitoring their aging parents spending habits. You want to honor their independence, but what if they show signs of…Read more ›
    Mikol Davis
  • Heed These Warnings About Aging Parents’ Medications June 9, 2017
    Is your aging parent one of the many battling Alzheimer’s disease or another form of dementia and taking medication? Dr. Elizabeth Landsverk, a Silicon Valley, California-based geriatrician, recently quoted in an article in The Mercury News, strongly advises against elders…Read more ›
    Mikol Davis
FREE Report: Mental Wellness Technique For Stress Relief