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Coping with Caregiver "Victimhood"

By Blogger
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Caregiving has its ups and downs and when things get really hectic and the world seems to be falling down around you, you can’t help but feel like a victim.

“Why do I have to be saddled with all of this?”

“No one appreciates the effect this is having on my life.”

“I can’t do any of the things I used to do.”

…and so on.

Here’s an idea to help you deal with these feelings: have something that is yours and yours alone where you can escape, even if only for a few moments. For example, if you like gardening, start a small garden you can tend to. It won’t take a lot of time and won’t cost a lot of money, and when you are working with it you will feel better about your situation. You can look at your garden and have some satisfaction that you are doing something for yourself and no one can mess with it.

What do you like to do that you can make your own? How about a favorite TV show? Watch it or record it; when you do you will have the satisfaction of knowing that you are doing something that you want to do instead of the many things that you have to do because of your caregiving responsibilities.

“But that’s selfish. I should be spending my time doing things for my ‘patient’”

HOGWASH! It isn’t selfish. It’s rejuvenating and will help you to better deal with your responsibilities. It’s an oasis.

And you deserve it.

This article is one in a series on coping strategies for patients and caregivers alike. For more thoughts on caregiving, coping strategies, and just plain fun subscribe to my free monthly newsletter at www.CaringAndCoping.com Need a speaker for an upcoming event? I have a program that will knock your socks off! www.ThePPP.org/speaking/#handle

Add a Comment2 Comments

Dave, you make wonderful points. I'm so glad you're writing about this topic. Caregivers are often unsung heroes doing tasks they never asked for, for people they love who are in positions they never asked for, either. It's a multi-layered, complicated, emotional thing and we can't say too much about it.

One of our Empowher moderators, Coach Virginia, is a caregiver for her husband, as well as being a mom, a teacher and a student. What she writes about the subject always touches me:


March 24, 2009 - 8:58am
Blogger (reply to Diane Porter)

Thanks, Diane, for your kind words and for taking the time to post them! I agree that Coach Virginia is very touching; thanks for pointing me to her.

March 31, 2009 - 8:38am
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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.


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