Family Caregiver Tips: How to Cope with Feeling Unappreciated

Family Caregiver Tips: How to Cope with Feeling Unappreciated

From the time you woke up this morning up until the end of an exhausting day, you’ve given your all to your older loved one. You provided help with showering and dressing, prepared nutritious meals, cleaned the house, all while making sure a senior loved one was happily involved in meaningful activities, made it to their 3:00 hair appointment, and picked up groceries and prescriptions afterwards. And while you are not doing any of these things for a pat on the back, a simple “thank you” would be nice – but is rarely offered.

If you’re feeling under-appreciated or completely unappreciated altogether, you’re not alone. This is definitely a frequent occurrence in caregiving for a number of reasons, and if not addressed, may lead to caregiver depression or burnout. These family caregiver tips can help.

  1. Start modeling appreciative behavior. Let the senior see by example how good it feels to be appreciated by sincerely thanking them whenever the chance arises. If they fold and hang up the towel after their shower, wipe off the table after lunch, or help with putting away groceries – be sure to thank them.
  2. Learn the skill of self-appreciation. The work you are doing is extremely important, and you deserve to be rewarded for it. Identify something every week that you’re going to do for yourself for a job done well. It can be as simple as an hour spent reading on the porch swing or a muffin from your favorite bakery. You may also want to plan for larger rewards, like a weekend getaway, by engaging respite care services from a trusted care partner like Amy’s Helping Hands.
  3. Try to understand their perspective. There are a number of reasons a senior may not be expressing gratitude for the tasks you are doing. Someone with dementia or another chronic condition could be fully focused on their particular struggles or the day-to-day tasks at hand that are now more difficult. Putting yourself in the other person’s shoes will allow you to accept that the lack of verbal appreciation does not automatically equate to true ungratefulness.

We are always available to share in your caregiving duties, to ease stress and allow you plenty of time for self-care. Frequently scheduled time away is vital, and we are here for as much or as little as you'll need. While you’re taking care of yourself, we will help a senior you love with:

  • Laundry and housekeeping
  • Meals
  • Medication reminders
  • Personal care (baths, showers, getting dressed, etc.)
  • Companionship for conversations, puzzles, games, exercise, hobbies, etc.
  • Transportation to appointments or fun outings
  • And much more, in accordance with each person’s unique needs

Contact Amy’s Helping Hands, the leading provider of home care services in Windsor, Ontario and the surrounding areas, for an in-home consultation and to learn more about our customized in-home care for seniors.