Finding help: Building your support network
So much caregiving is complex and involves a lot of moving parts.
It helps to see the final picture, and all of the support you have available, before you start putting the pieces together.
Auditing your care situation can mean the difference between always reacting to what is going on and being proactively prepared for what comes next. One is a path to certain stress; the other allows you more flexibility and emotional fortitude when times get tough, because you’re more prepared.
Here are some important questions to ask yourself when you start your care audit:
- What are the needs of the person in my care—now, short-term and long-term?
- Who is helping to meet those needs?
- Are there gaps in those needs being met?
- Who can fill the gaps?
- What are my needs?
- Are my needs being met?
- Who can support me in meeting my needs?
As you start thinking about meeting needs, consider all of the possible resources that can support you. Those include public, private and community resources, as well as immediate and extended members of your family. The better you are at completing your audit, the easier it will be to identify who can help where and how.