The Caregiver

Love, respect, kindness, patience, magnanimity, humor, forgiveness: these are the hallmarks of a wonderful relationship. For many elderly people, the quantity of personal relationships is severely diminished. Their friends passed away and their family lives remotely and seldom visits.  The person he or she spends the most time with is his or her caregiver. Therefore, the harmonious relationship between the elderly patient and the caregiver is vital to the emotional and physical well-being of the patient.

Here is some wisdom on establishing and maintaining a positive, long-term relationship between a caregiver and a patient.

“We have a lot of love for each other,” says the Champion caregiver, as she gives the client a reassuring hug. The client’s face reflects her loving feeling. The caregiver behaves like a benevolent daughter to the client. However, neither of them have decades of past, combined, bitter-sweet experiences, typically formed in mother-daughter relationships. They have a clean slate allowing them to bond.

In conversation, if the client doesn’t hear well, the caregiver smoothly repeats the words to the client. The client is enabled to continue with the conversation. In dining out, if the client can’t read the menu, the caregiver scans the selection of entrees and suggests some of their favorites to her. The caregiver always defers to the client’s wishes. The caregiver understands that her job is to be ready with assistance when the client’s limitations let her down. The caregiver never misses a beat. The client never feels left out or unattended.

From the Desk of Kim Champion