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6 Reasons It May Be Time to Transition Out of Family Caregiving

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There are many situational reasons why family caregivers opt out of caring for a loved one.

There are those who can no longer provide round-the-clock care given a progressive condition or disease, while others who are burnt out and need a break from the physical, mental and emotional sides of caregiving. 

Whatever your situation, these transitions are never easy—but it’s a decision family caregivers must make from time to time to ensure their loved one receives the highest quality care. Below, we outline common reasons it may be time to opt out of family caregiver responsibilties.

1. Care

Whether you’ve been caring for your loved one for three months or three years, ask yourself: “Are my loved one’s needs beyond my physical abilities?” If so, it may be time to consider alternate care options, especially if your loved one’s health is quickly declining.

2. Home

Are you caring for your loved one at their home? Your home? Do they have enough space? Other factors to consider include their safety and security. Are they able to navigate to and from rooms without the risk of falling, tripping or slipping? If the answer is no, it may be time to look into alternate living arrangements.

3. Work 

Are you missing deadlines at work because of family caregiver responsibilities? A vast majority of family caregivers struggle to maintain a work-life balance.

Talk with your employer about work hour flexibility. Making adjustments to your 9-5 job allows you to take a less restricted role in your caring journey, while helping your loved one during normal work hours. If work hour flexibility is not an option, talk with your family about transitioning care.

4. Family

Are you married? Do you have kids? If so, how has caregiving impacted time with them? If you’re feeling stretched thin with little-to-no time for your closest family members and friends, talk with the people who matter most to you. They may be able to split responsibilities with you, so you can focus on other important areas of your life.

5. Cost

The majority of family caregivers provide unpaid care, with out-of-pocket expenses costing anywhere between $4,000 and $8,000 a year.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed with expenses, talk with a financial planner to explore what benefits are available to you and your family. You may be surprised to learn that some alternate care options are similar in price.

6. Burnout 

Are you experiencing feelings of physical, mental or emotional exhaustion, making it difficult to care for yourself—let alone your loved one?

Taking on all the responsibilities of caregiving without the support of others can result in burnout. If you’re feeling run down, look into services like in-home health care to help with daily activities like bathing, dressing and grooming. If you’re still feeling burnt out after the extra assistance, it’s probably time to make the transition.

No matter what you decide to do, most family caregivers stay connected in the care provided to their loved one. While your role may shift from daily to weekly care, take comfort in knowing you’re contributing as much as you can at this point in time.

Get Access to More Family Caregiver Resources

Looking for more advice as you progress on your unique caregiving journey? Download our complimentary resource, The Comprehensive Guide for First-Time Family Caregivers, to make this transition easier for you and your loved one. 

Download our family caregiver guide

Cathy Nichols
Cathy Nichols
Considers it an honor as a Certified Celebrant to listen to life stories, and then design and conduct meaningful tributes. Cathy also trains celebrants nationally, equipping them to share those legacies in ways that comfort and enlighten. Honorably serving Busch families since 2004.
 

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