Family Caregiving and Anticipatory Grief

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Here are some tell-tale signs of grief and tips for helping those dealing with grief, according to the Family Caregiver Alliance.

Transcript of Family Caregiving and Anticipatory Grief

  • 1.Family Caregiving andAnticipatory

2. In the waning stages of a loved ones life, it can be a very difficultsituation for everyone, including the family caregiver. The anticipation of a death of a loved one is often as traumatic as theactual passing. These are sometimes life-changing 3. If you are the primary caregiver of someone you love, the experiencecan affect every aspect of your life for days, months or forever. It is natural to grieve the death of a loved one before, during and afterthe actual time of their passing. The ability to deal with this devastating fact is what grieving is all 4. If someone has had a prolonged illness or serious memory impairment,family members may begin grieving the loss of the persons formerself long before the time of death. This is sometimes referred to as anticipatory grief. Anticipating the loss can be just as painful as losing a life. Experiencing guilt or shame for wishing it were over or seeing a loved one as already gone intellectually is 5. Here are some tell-tale signs of grief and tips for helping those dealingwith grief, according to the Family Caregiver 6. Symptoms of grief - Physical These include low energy or exhaustion along with headaches or anupset stomach. Some caregivers may sleep more than usual, while others may pushthemselves to extremes at work. These activities may make you more prone to illness. It is important to take care of yourself by maintaining a proper diet,exercise and rest. Taking care of your body can help your overall 7. Symptoms of grief - Emotional These can include memory gaps, preoccupation, irritability, depression,euphoria, wailing rages and passive resignation. Some caregivers identify strongly with their loved one and his or herfeelings. It is important not to judge yourself too harshly as you experienceconflicting and overwhelming emotions. A trained counselor, support group or trusted friend can help you sortthrough feelings such as anxiety, loss, anger, guilt and sadness. If depression or anxiety persist, a doctor or psychiatrist may prescribeantidepressant drugs to help alleviate feelings of 8. Symptoms of grief - Spirituality You may feel closer to God and more religious than ever before. Conversely, many caregivers dealing with their loved ones impendingpassing are outraged with God. You may even feel cut off from your soul altogether, a temporaryparalysis of the spirit. A member of the clergy or spiritual advisor can help you examine thefeelings you are experiencing. Learning to deal with anticipatory grief or any kind of grief is taking backyour 9. Tips for helping a bereaved caregiverBe available.Listen without giving advice.Do not offer stories of your own.Allow the grieving person to use expressions of anger or bitterness,including such expressions against God.Realize that no one can replace or undo the loved ones impendingpassing. Allow him or her to feel the pain.Be patient, kind and understanding without being patronizing.Dont force the caregiver to share feelings if he or she doesnt feelcomfortable doing 10. Tips for helping a bereaved caregiverPhysical and emotional touches can bring great comfort to the grievingcaregiver. A hug or touch of the hand are appropriate gestures.Be there later, when friends and family have all gone back to theirroutines.Remember holidays, birthdays and anniversaries which have importantmeaning for the caregiver. Offer support during this time.Dont be afraid of reminding the caregiver of the loss. It is already on hisor her 11. Find Quality Care NowLocate a BrightStar Near You!Find a location in the USFind a location in