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11 Things You Should Never Say To a Caregiver

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11 Things You Should Never Say To a Caregiver

By Anne-Marie Botek, AgingCare.com Editor

Some things simply shouldn’t be said.

When they come from people who don’t know what someone else is going through, even well-intentioned comments and questions can be frustrating and hurtful.

Cindy Laverty, caregiver coach, radio talk show host, and author of, “Caregiving: Eldercare Made Clear and Simple,” offers examples of phrases that can leave caregivers thinking, “Did she really just say that?”

1. “Why are you having such a hard time being a caregiver?” Usually voiced by someone who has never been a caregiver for an elderly loved one, this question can be very difficult for a caregiver to hear. As Laverty points out, it effectively takes their role of providing care for a loved one, and diminishes it.

2. “Gosh…we haven’t seen you in such a long time. Why don’t you get out more?” Though it probably comes from a place of love, Laverty points out that this can be an unproductive way to express concern for a friend or family member who is a caregiver. “The truth is that most caregivers do need to get out more, but this is an insensitive way of saying it,” she says.

3. “You look really tired. Are you making sure to take care of yourself?”Caregivers generally have a good reason for looking tired and haggard—because they are. “The biggest issue for caregivers is that they tend to sacrifice personal care—it’s the first thing that goes,” Laverty says. Caregivers look tired because they are not getting enough sleep, they spend their nights worrying and making sure their loved one doesn’t wander. But, that doesn’t mean that they appreciate having that fact pointed out to them.

Read More:
Top 6 Reasons Caregivers Need Sleep
A Caregiver’s Guide to Caring for a Narcissist
30 Quotes and Inspirations for Caregivers

11 Things You Should Never Say To a Caregiver originally appeared on AgingCare.com.

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86 comments

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4:11AM PDT on Jun 27, 2013

Thanks

10:16AM PDT on Aug 8, 2012

It is good to think of CAREGIVERS. No one knows how difficult it can be, even when caring for someone you love dearly, a parent, a child, a husband or wife. Everyone seems to forget how stressful it is for anyone to be a caregiver.

Those who are CAREGIVERS are a blessing to all.

9:34AM PDT on Aug 4, 2012

Sometimes people just don't know the right thing to see, and I'm sure many well-meaning people have said to themselves, " Open mouth, insert foot!!"

4:10PM PDT on Aug 1, 2012

how does one respond when constantly asked "how is your "relative"?" who is quite elderly, no longer mobile and in a nursing home, and has been for several years...

they are obviously not well...

4:10PM PDT on Aug 1, 2012

how does one respond when constantly asked "how is your "relative"?" who is quite elderly, no longer mobile and in a nursing home, and has been for several years...

they are obviously not well...

4:06PM PDT on Aug 1, 2012

ty

4:06PM PDT on Aug 1, 2012

ty

8:58AM PDT on Jul 31, 2012

Thanks.

4:02AM PDT on Jul 31, 2012

Thanks for the article!

9:39PM PDT on Jul 30, 2012

Caregivers are so needed and all our attention and emotional understanding must be in use, when with one!!

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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