Guest blog from Michele Rosenthal, Founder of HealMyPTSD.com, Author, Speaker
If someone you love is in recovery following a traumatic event, then taking on the role of being their caregiver can be incredibly difficult and, frankly, frustrating. Many caregivers find that their new role is so draining and demanding that they neglect to look after themselves and take time out to take care of their own needs.
If you are acting as a caregiver then it is important to advocate for yourself as well as for the individual that you are supporting. You need to take the time that you need to rest and rejuvenate. All too often, caregivers spend so much time trying to do the right thing for the individual that they are caring for that they simply do not care for themselves, and are unable to function at their best.
Reduce Your Stress Levels
The life of a caregiver can be very stressful, and you can find yourself in constant distress and turmoil. It is possible to reduce your stress levels when you feel you simply cannot cope anymore, by appreciating that healing takes time and you are signed up for a marathon, not for a sprint, but the battle will soon be over.
It is important to maintain a relationship with the person you are caring for that sits beyond your current care giver/needer relationship dynamic: whether that individual is your spouse, your family member or your friend, it is important that this pre-existing relationship is maintained and is strong enough to continue to stand alone once the need for care is removed.
To find out more about how to navigate the chaos of being a caregiver for an individual in trauma recovery, you can read the full version of this article here.