|Return to "Happenings!" index||March 12, 2018|
In this issue:
2016 "Blue Book" Now Online
The Alzheimer's Aid Society would like to congratulate Ruth Harris on her 80th birthday. Ruth has been the facilitator of the Sacramento Tuesday morning support group for several years. Many caregivers and their loved ones have benefited from her loving, caring support. As a caregiver herself, she understands the needs and concerns the Alzheimer's journey brings. HAPPY BIRTHDAY, RUTH!!
As a reminder, the Sacramento Tuesday morning support group (including their patient group) that was meeting at the Alzheimer's Aid Society offices has moved to Arden Church of the Nazarene, 3337 Arden Way, Sacramento, 95825.
Info for Caregivers: Boundaries
In the relationship between the caregiver and their loved one, the most important partner is the caregiver. Given this critical role, it is not selfishness when the caregiver receives the first priority. We all have limits, both physical and emotional, and we all must function within the confines of the way it really is rather than the way we want it to be.
As the caregiver, you need to carefully consider each task or need and where your physical and emotional boundaries lie. Then, accept that you have the right and obligation to set and maintain realistic boundaries. If you do not do this, you will eventually resent the person you care for, become angry with yourself, and then feel guilty. Don't limit your effectiveness - find your boundaries and stick to them.
How to Establish and Maintain Boundaries:
Set realistic goals for yourself and your loved one. Much stress is self-induced - especially when you feel you "should" be able to do this or you "ought" to do it. You feel guilty when you can't be perfect and expectations are not met. "Should" and "ought" have no basis in reality - allow yourself to be human. This is what your loved one needs most of all.
Learn to say "no" to others and to yourself. "No" is a life-saving word - it literally can preserve you and your loved one. It is OK to say, "No, I can't do that" - good people say "no", too.
Accept the fact that you cannot, and should not, do or solve everything. It is often difficult to accept that we can't fix everything or do everything. Many things have no solutions or explanations. The world is full of unexplainable things. You're not expected to have all the answers.
Talk to yourself using positive statements. Remind yourself of all the things you are doing - if you can't do anything about a situation, remind yourself that it's a waste of energy to get upset about it. Tell yourself it's OK not to be able to do everything. Let go of things you really cannot do and refer them to someone who can. Let go of those that really don't matter - decide what's really important, do that, and let the rest go.
Have someone to talk to. It helps to talk with someone who will listen and not judge you. Be each other's support system - the benefit is in talking about it. Find a support group where you can talk to others who understand your situation.
Accept the fact that all emotions are OK. Emotions are part of being human and are meant to be felt and expressed. Saying how you feel is satisfying and reduces stress. Talking about your feelings is OK - how you act on them can be OK or not OK.
Take care of yourself. Many people depend on you and need you. If you give everything you have without replenishing yourself, soon you'll have nothing left to give. By taking care of yourself, you're taking care of those who depend on you. Taking care of yourself is not selfish, it is essential.
This information is extracted from "Caregiving" by Dr. Barbara Gillogly, Ph.D., LMFT, CPG published in A Practical Guide for Alzheimer's Caregivers, commonly called "The Blue Book", 2016 Edition.
Vietnamese Caregiving Study
As our population ages, it will also become increasingly ethnically and culturally diverse. Researchers at the UC Davis, Diversity and Disparities Lab study the ways that individual and social factors influence those with dementia and their family caregivers. The goal is to translate research into culturally appropriate, community-based interventions that will help those suffering from dementia and their family caregivers.
As part of their work, the Vietnamese Caregiving Study is currently recruiting Vietnamese-speaking and English-speaking Vietnamese caregivers who take care of family members with memory problems or dementia in the Sacramento area. Caregivers will participate in a program that will help them learn how to better take care of their family members and themselves. Caregivers will also receive valuable information (in both Vietnamese and English) on cognitive impairment, dementia, community resources, and they will be compensated for their time in the program.
For more information, see the Study flyer in English or in Vietnamese.
Can You Help? We Need Volunteers
We have an urgent need for volunteers to help in our office to answer phones and assist visitors. In addition, office volunteers will make copies and may respond to office e-mail. We also need a volunteer to facilitate the patient support group for the Tuesday morning caregiver support group. If you are interested in finding out more, please call our office at (916) 483-2002.
What is "Happenings!"
"Happenings!" is the our monthly e-mail newsletter for the Alzheimer's Aid Society. We send it at the beginning of the month so you can stay up-to-date on events and news in northern California. We will also include tips for caregivers and highlight new scientific research. Recent issues are available on our website. Do you have a comment or feedback? Please reply to this message - we would love to hear from you.
Copyright © 2018 Alzheimer's Aid Society of Northern California, All rights reserved.
Our mailing address is:
2641 Cottage Way #4
Sacramento, CA 95825 USA
Phone: (916) 483-2002