Today, more than 30 million caregivers provide unpaid care to an adult aged 50 and older. In itself, caregiving can be a rewarding challenge. Often, however, it exposes age-old rivalries that threaten sibling relationships and family cohesion. The majority of conflicts arise when one or two siblings shoulder most of the caregiving burden, while others stay away. In such a situation, burnout is a strong possibility. Below are our best tips for cooperative caregiving in Bayside: it’s possible for siblings to work together AND remain friends.
1. Set Up A Meeting
I can’t bear to see Mom suffering like this.
Dad and I never got along. I don’t see what this has to do with me.
I’m just too busy to deal with Mom right now.
You may have heard the above excuses many times. Truth be told, you may have similar feelings yourself. However, it can hurt to know that your siblings have made assumptions about your availability and resources. In such a situation, setting up a time to air your thoughts can be useful.
Perhaps, your siblings aren’t aware of how you really feel. Discuss your feelings graciously, but be honest about what’s needed. Even if your siblings can’t visit your parent, they can at least take over smaller tasks.
These can include setting up appointments, paying utility bills, researching care options, and picking up a portion of the tab for in-home services.
2. Consider Help to Mediate
Getting started with a plan for cooperative caregiving can be stressful. Old rivalries can precipitate arguments and conflict. Sometimes, siblings disagree on the type of care aging parents need.
Consider hiring a mediator or geriatric care manager to coordinate care options for your parent. A geriatric care manager can provide objective assistance in navigating family conflicts and facilitating real solutions.
Don’t underestimate the role mediation can play in bringing you and your siblings together.
3. Keep Communication Open
You still need to keep in touch with your siblings, even after you begin working on a plan. While face-to-face meetings may not always be possible, regular communication is crucial. Stay in touch via text, phone, or chat. Be willing to listen rather than talk. Take into consideration the abilities and resources each person can willingly provide.
4. Be Flexible
Make room for adjustments within a caregiving plan. If one of your siblings is going on vacation for a week, you and the others may have to pick up the slack. On the other hand, if you’re going to be working extra shifts for a few weeks, your siblings may need to cover for you. Undoubtedly, working together can lessen the burdens on any one sibling.
5. Think About Outside Caregiving Help
Generally, caregivers spend an average of 253 hours a month helping a parent with self-care or mobility needs. That’s equal to a full-time job. You and your siblings may simultaneously work while providing care for an aging parent. Despite everyone pitching in, your parent may still need a little more help.
At such a time, you may need to consider in-home care services, dementia care, or specialized care services. For the latter, in-home care providers can treat and monitor specific symptoms related to a host of diseases.
David York Agency Supports Cooperative Caregiving
David York Agency understands the challenges of caregiving and is willing to provide all the support you need.
If you’d like more information about David York Agency’s qualified, compassionate caregivers, contact us at 718.376.7755. A free phone consultation can help you decide what services might be best. If you’d like to hear more from us, please like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter or LinkedIn.
David York Agency Home Healthcare is committed to providing personalized care for your loved one. If you have questions about our services, please contact us. We can help you through the difficult times and give you the break you deserve!