January blog: Elder care groups lend support
“Cheers to a new year and another chance for us to get it right” – Oprah Winfrey
The beginning of a new year offers us a chance to make a fresh start and gives renewed energy to the parts of our life that need a little extra attention. It also offers us the chance to look back on our victories and to celebrate our accomplishments. Last year was another challenging year. It required patience, continual commitment and increased adaptability. Congratulate yourself on making it through 2021.
Whether you are new to caregiving, have been caregiving a while, or see it coming in your near future, there are always things you can do and learn to make both your life and the life of your care partner easier.
One of those things is joining a support group.
How can a support group help?
Support groups are an essential resource for someone providing care to a loved one. A support group is a confidential place that provides social, emotional and moral support for those who are sharing a similar experience. It’s a place where you can talk openly and honestly about your feelings, and through this you can reduce the stress, depression and anxiety that comes with being a caregiver. Support group members share a unique bond with each other. Because of this, they can relate to each other in ways that friends or family may not understand. It offers a space to exchange information and ideas on available — but maybe unknown — resources. It can give you first-hand information and education about whatever you are going through. By participating and sharing in a group, members feel more confident and empowered. But most importantly, a support group lets you know that you are not alone; there are other caregivers out there struggling too.
Although all support groups are different, all groups share one thing in common: they make you feel less lonely and isolated.
Support groups aren’t for everyone, and not all support groups are created equal. But I hope you will find one, either in person or virtually, and give it a try. Isn’t that what we do in a new year? Our UK Elder Care — Care Group meets virtually at noon on the third Wednesday of every month. Please join us.
Stay well, stay healthy, stay connected,