Jared is not the kind of man who had been accustomed to asking for help. He was a fiercely independent person who took care of his family, was there for his friends whenever they needed help, and was a great shoulder to lean on. In his 80s, he was having extreme difficulty with mobility, doing various tasks around the house, maintaining his home, and even going shopping. He asked an adult child in the area for help, and though he didn’t consider her a caregiver, that’s exactly what she became.
She loved her father, but Jared became ornery.
He was belligerent at times, insulted her often, and was basically a nasty person. This wasn’t his normal personality. Throughout much of his life, Jared had been a kind, caring person who is slow to anger. Now, though, it seemed every little thing was getting to him. It appeared as though the slightest thing could ‘set him off.’
For that family caregiver, the stress was tremendous.
For Jared’s daughter, she was overwhelmed with stress and anxiety every single day. She would have difficulty sleeping, wondering what the next day was going to bring. She didn’t want to go through this much longer, but felt as though there were no other options.
When a coworker told her to look into home care, she was reluctant.
She knew her father was going to react to that idea. However, she did contact an agency and was invited to sit down and talk to somebody there to discover her options. They told her that her father’s behavior may very well be due to any number of situations, including potential health issues, but it also might be due to a lack of control.
For somebody who was in complete control of his or her life for so long, having to ask somebody for help is not just difficult, it can be frustrating. When they don’t have adequate outlets for that frustration, it can lead to outbursts and trying to hurt other people, even those they love.
It’s not necessarily a rational behavior, but with age comes physical challenges, mental changes, and sometimes these behavioral shifts. Jared’s daughter finally sat down to talk about what was hurting her so much. She addressed these concerns in a calm and rational manner and Jared apologized profusely. He also acknowledged the need for help and they hired a home care aide for a couple of days a week to start.
Eventually, Jared relied on this caregiver for everything he needed help with and that gave him more quality time with the daughter he loved so much.
Angel Alliance Caregivers of Galloway, NJ is dedicated to helping seniors maintain full, independent lives where they most desire to live: in the comfort of their own homes. Call us at (609) 965-0028.
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