At the Dallas Certified Senior Advisor conference in August, the last session I attended before the close of the conference was Denise M. Brown. From the Chicago area, Denise launched Caregiving.com in 1996. She has a wealth of knowledge. She presented with grace and humor about the six stages of caregiving and the caregiving years.
More than 40 million persons in the US provide care to a family member and the number will continue to grow. Research by Caregiving.com shows that family caregivers rate their stress at 4.16 out o 1-5 with 5 being the most stressed. This number has not waivered much at all over the years. Denise outlined the six stages of caregiving as:
Stage 1: The Expectant Caregiver
Purpose: Prepare and take care of self
Stage 2: The Freshman Caregiver
Purpose: Experiment, get your feet wet and see what works
Stage 3: The Entrenched Caregiver
Purpose: to develop a routine, create a schedule for yourself and your caree. Self-care during caregiving is different. Be open to whatever feels right.
Stage 4: The Pragmatic Caregiver
Purpose: To gain a better understanding of yourself and your caree. Let go of ego and control. Here we release tension. Find forgiveness, joys, shared activities that welcome beginnings and endings.
Stage 5 The Transitioning Caregiver
Stage 6 The Godspeed Caregiver
To find out more about the last two stages I have to read the book. I’m sure it will be extremely helpful as is her website at caregiving.com There is a conference coming up in Chicago Nov 8-11th for caregivers and for professionals. That can be found at her website as well.