Trying to be a family caregiver can be a difficult challenge. The last thing that you want is to hurt the relationship that you have with your family member, but you also want to make sure that he or she is safe, and that they have what they need. One of the cornerstones of a healthy relationship is respect. Sometimes you may feel as though you need to earn that level of respect. Other times it comes easily.
So, how can you earn respect when you’re providing home care to a loved one? This is one of the greatest challenges, especially when you’re dealing with an elderly loved one. Your mother, father, grandmother or grandfather, or other elderly family member will be set in their ways. They will have built a pattern of behavior up through all of the years of their work life, family life, and friendships. It’s not going to be easy to change their demeanor or behavior, but that doesn’t mean that you need to accept any type of abuse from them.
You can, and should, be able to earn respect from them through a few simple steps.
- Do what you say you’re going to do. One of the quickest ways that people fail to earn respect is that they don’t do the things that they say they will do. When you commit to something and follow through, you’re going to earn respect faster.
- Be honest. This step is tied into number 1, being honest is about being respectful of the other person as well. You should make sure that you don’t sugarcoat anything that you have to tell your loved one. You don’t need to be hurtful, but just be honest.
- Set ground rules. As long as you are firm and you and your loved one know what to expect, then you’re going to have an easier time earning their respect. It’s not always easy, but when you’re providing home care to a loved one, you want them to be comfortable and you don’t want to ‘make waves.’ However, being too loose, or lax with expectations is when you tend to lose respect.
- Be consistent. When you’re consistent with the care that you’re providing, then you’ll earn respect more readily.
Earning respect from your family member when you’re a caregiver may be a challenge. If you feel that it could harm your relationship, then you should consider hiring a professional caregiver instead.
For more information about caregiving services in University City MO, contact Senior Services Unlimited. We are an elder care agency providing affordable and respectful home care to couples, veterans, and the disabled. Call (314) 646-8131.