While Caregiving, Don’t Forget Your SpousePosted on May 16, 2014 by ElderCare Resources in Blog, Caregiver Education, Education, Respite Care
Modern Aging: Caring for your spouse while caregiving
By: Katie Gilstrap
As a caregiver, finding time to take care of yourself can be difficult, and trying to emotionally support your spouse can feel like just another burden. But taking the time to invest in your marriage and to communicate better with your partner will help both of you. A spouse can be a big help in supporting you through the trials of caregiving, but it is important to remember that a marriage is not a weed. Your spouse needs tending to and nurturing.
Here are three tips for supporting your spouse while caregiving:
Create and honor your rituals: Having regular activities that you do together builds camaraderie. Find small moments that become things you always do together, such as having coffee together every morning. These routines offer comfort and help to carve out a place just for the two of you.
Know your spouse’s signal for attention: What does your spouse do when he needs attention? Does he get snuggly or snippy? If your spouse is feeling neglected, he is likely to have a habit of saying or doing something. Keep your eyes and ears open for those signs, and look for ways to fulfill your spouse’s need for attention.
Sweat the small stuff: The everyday care and nurturing of a person are what keep couples close. Listen to your spouse when he needs to vent, greet your spouse at the door with a kiss and a hug, or make your spouse’s favorite meal. Marriage is about teamwork, and all of the small moments culminate to build trust and a sense of satisfaction.
Katie Gilstrap is co-founder of Lift Caregiving.