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How to Balance Life and Caregiving

Should you attend your daughter’s soccer game or take your dad to his doctor’s appointment? If you’re caught in the middle between responsibilities to your spouse and children and caring for your aging parents, you’re a genuine member of the sandwich generation. You know the stress of never having quite enough time or energy to give all members of your family the attention they deserve.

There’s obviously no perfect answer to dilemmas like these — but there are steps you can take to help balance your family responsibilities:

  • Involve your spouse and your children. Share your feelings about how important it is for you to care for your parents. Develop a weekly schedule and do your best to adhere to it. Ask for their advice and support when making decisions.
  • Understand your parents’ true needs. Learn all you can about your parents’ condition and how you can best help them. Provide the most appropriate care while respecting their independence.
  • Nurture your marriage and your important relationships. Make time to enjoy the company of friends and to preserve the romance in your marriage. These vital connections will remain important even after you complete your responsibilities as a caregiver.
  • Take care of yourself. Eat well, stay rested and exercise regularly. Give yourself credit for doing the best possible job rather than focusing on things you haven’t accomplished. Know your limits and give yourself breaks.

Sunrise understands the need for a break. Short-term stays can offer both the family caregiver and senior some time to spend apart and reconnect with themselves. Contact your local Sunrise Senior Living community to learn about our respite care.