Caregiver vs Caretaker
As a carer you can fall into the category of caretaker, caregiver, or a little of both. The type of carer that you are can have a big impact on how you cope in the caring role.
The person you care for has a problem. They tell you they’re bored and want you to think of something for them to do. What do you do?
a) let them find something to do themselves?
b) find something for them to do?
Caregivers empower the person they care for by encouraging them to make their own choices and be responsible for their own actions. They:
- understand that caring involves choices and alternatives, not ultimatums
- take into account their own needs, the needs of the person they care for, and the needs of others in their family
- know that because someone demands or expects something, doesn’t automatically give them the right to it
- are able to assert their limits and boundaries
- are open to alternatives, learning and trying new approaches
- appreciate the strengths and qualities in others and themselves
- take care of themselves
- accept help from others
Caregivers let go of trying to control the person they care for. They make a life for themselves that will sustain them when they are no longer in the caring role.