DiscoverHealth

Friends clasping hands

Providing care for caregivers

It’s tough to see a loved one dealing with cancer. Being a caregiver for a loved one also is challenging.

From a close friend, child to a spouse, a caregiver is the unpaid person that provides the most care to a person who is struggling with an illness. While many family members and friends provide support and love, this person is the one who dedicates most of their time.

Caregivers may drive their loved one to chemotherapy, help if they can’t dress or feed themselves, act as a financial and legal manager, and clean the home of the person who is ill.

Being a caregiver allows you to show your love and respect to someone who has cared for you. But while their love and concern revolves around the person with the illness, being a caregiver can be also be painful, stressful and exhausting.

It’s painful and frustrating to see someone going through an illness and you may feel like you’re running out of steam.

Part of being a good caregiver means taking care of yourself. Here are 4 ways to do so while still providing care for a loved one with cancer:

  1. Do something that refuels you. It could be anything from dancing, cleaning, painting, reading or as small as drinking a new cup of coffee.
  2. Join a support group. You may think you are the only one going through this, but many other people are providing care every day. Talking to others who are going through the same thing may help you through the process.
  3. If you feel depressed try to find an outlet, such as eating healthier, exercising, journaling, meditating or finding spiritual support.
  4. Take time to do things you enjoy, such as having lunch with friends, taking a walk or going to the movies.

As a caregiver, do you experience feelings of inadequacy? Explore these feelings, and learn ways to reclaim that sense of self-worth that you deserve, during an upcoming event at the Bearden-Josey Center for Breast Health. Learn more, and register now.