Can Caregiving Be A Positive Experience?
Some say, Yes; and some say, No. I say, it depends. Let’s think about this for a few minutes. Do you know your own personality type and tendencies? If you know how you tend to act and react to stressful situations that will help when you find yourself in a caregiving situation. Some of you are thinking, “What in the world does this have to do with what I have to do?” Hang on a few minutes and I will show you.
If you don’t know your personality type, I would recommend that you take a Myers-Briggs personality types test. You can do it for free online.
Link that describes the different types:
This test was free, at the time of this writing. November 2017.
I saw this in an article and it kind of explains what I am talking about.
“Coping strategies take many forms, and three common types are described below:
Emotion-Focused (e.g., social support, humor, and finding meaning in the situation)
Problem-Focused (e.g., help from others, advice, and planning)
Dysfunctional (e.g., venting, denial, and substance abuse)
Problem-focused coping helps individuals feel in control of a stressful situation, but unfortunately, research indicates that Neurotic caregivers are less likely to engage in this type of coping strategy. And longitudinal research reveals that anxiety does not escalate over time for caregivers who use positive emotion-focused coping strategies, which is also used infrequently by Neurotic caregivers.
So caregivers may wish to change the way they cope with the stressors of caring for a loved one, for the sake of the family member’s well-being, as well as their own.”
Kristine Anthis, PhD | January 3, 2012
Positive aspects of caregiving include: You feel good about your experience because you are able to give back to someone who has cared for you. You have the satisfaction of knowing that your loved one is receiving excellent care (either by you, other family members or by hiring outside help). You know you are being a good role model for your own children. You know that you are making a positive difference in their lives. It is very possible that you will have precious memories and moments that you would not have had otherwise. It is an accomplishment.
It isn’t easy and there will be struggles, anger, and resentment at the situation. But you have the tools to handle whatever situation arises or you know who to call for help. After two or three years, most folks know that it is time to get help and to make sure that their loved one is still receiving the best medical care. It is at that point that I would ask that you consider contacting me, Pat Collins of Empowering Health Options to see if it would benefit you and your loved one if we work together.
Empowering Health Options