I'm finding with caregiving when there are large families, it becomes very convoluted. Any ideas?

Follow
Share

Hello, I have and am a caregiver, and have been one for 8 years. As you know, along with the territory of care giving, there are families attached to those people. Lately, I am finding, that most families, really have no clue how to treat or talk to a caregiver, and there is not one specific rule. I feel that is because this (care giving), is not something that most families talk about, as it is or could be the one step away from death.
I am having issues with family members that let me know they want something one way, so I do it that way, then another family member comes in and says "why are you doing it that way", then I change, so then I try to get some chain of command, and basically in a nutshell, unless one person is running the situation, it becomes a communication nightmare.

Any ideas?

I have found that in my care giving search for clients, the one's that work out the best are one's where there is one client, and one or two siblings or people. When there are large families, it becomes very convoluted.

Regardless, I am finding that if anyone has any ideas on how to solve the issue of one client with a family of 5 people giving you five different directions. Then of course you have the person that needs the care giving, and what about them.

Any comments would be great.

I love what I do, I cherish my families, and know that I have been very blessed to have the compassion to step by step, one by one, make a difference.

Thank you fellow care givers!!! Have a great delightful day.

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
18

Answers

Show:
thank you for the above
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

I know how difficult it is. Last winter I had a hospice patient who had this amazing family. There were people coming in and out all the time and they were all just so lovely. There was some tension there but it was because they were in such a stressful situation. I got attached to this family and they to me. I came down with the flu and missed 2 days of work and on that second day my patient died. Had I not had the flu I would have been there for the family as I had been with them from the beginning. I know they weren't thinking about me during this time but I sure felt like I let them down and I carried that guilt with me for a while.

We do get involved with families to a certain extent. We're in their home, sometimes for long periods of time (12 hour shifts). At times they confide in us, at times we watch personal, private scenes played out between family members and we feel like we're peeping in on someone's private business, which we are.

We advocate for our patients. We take care of them and their needs. Over the years I've had to put forth a conscious effort not to get personally involved with the family because we're the only ones in the picture that are expendable. We're the only person in the situation who can be fired. Family dynamics have a way of sucking us in, I think.

I think you're a very good caregiver and because you want to do your best for this patient I think you're very successful and talented at what you do.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

Eyerislash:

Really
When the patient is 78?
When the patient is living with the family?
Yes the funds come from the patient? but . . . after she has paid me, she gets hackled by her family (sadly enough), because in reality they want her money in the end and they do not want to see it go tot the caregiver.

So I try to do what yous ay, and I am very good about leaving everything behind, but it is hard during the 10 hour day.

I do the best I can.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

1959,

You'll learn here that there are always 1 or 2 not-so-nice people in the mix. It's not very often that they stay but once in a while they pop out of the woodwork. Don't pay any attention to them.

Don't get too involved with this family. l've seen and listened to caregivers talk on and on about the family of their patient. The family is over there. You're over here. Your only job is to care for your patient, not to be involved with the family, not care about the everyday dealings in this family, not to care who does what to whom and why. Focus on your patient and when you leave you leave it all behind until your next shift.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Kaydeb, you have to act according to your employer's instructions, within the guidelines of your professional duty of care to your patient (for want of a better word). Instructions coming from anyone else that conflict with those you can politely redirect to your employer: one formula might be "I'm sure So-and-so would like to hear your suggestion; unfortunately I can't take it up without his/her explicit approval."

The only remaining problem might be when the employer's instructions seem to conflict in some way with the welfare of your patient. If it's a major conflict, put your duty of care to your patient first and then immediately explain what has happened to your employer. If it's a minor problem, and it can wait a while, then ask your employer about it before you implement a change.

As for family maelstroms, backbiting, competition, feeding frenzies and the rest of the hideous jumble, I can only sympathise. These people should - SHOULD - appreciate that it is grotesquely unfair to involve you in their machinations. But if they had that much sense or even decent manners, they wouldn't be behaving so badly in the first place. Just stay away from them; and if you have any concerns about what they're up to, report at once to your employer.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

1959..It is so difficult the situations that many caregivers find themselves in.. your heart is in the place of doing the very best you can for your patient..then here comes the family..;) I feel for you..I find that in having my inlaws for the past 13 years, that the other 8 kids like to come in like Mighty Mouse - here I am to save the day!- for a week- then right back out to their own lives..while I'm in the trenches, day in, day out. Caregiving is so very difficult. So many dynamics involved. God Bless.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

I want to thank everyone for the responses. It has allowed me to think reasonably and not react to anything that has been thrown (literally) to or at me.

I have read what everyone has said, and do know that in this world, I play a very important role for one woman. I will continue to focus on that and do, just what she asks.

I have asked her as we are talking in her hospital room about this and that, and the focus right now is her children, (who mean the world to her). I will print your answers out and keep them with me and simply remember that, as i assist her and very positively move throughout our/yours and my day, I believe that in life sometimes it takes a village, and with care giving, that village has help me certainly.
Helpful Answer (1)
Report

As eyerishlass mentioned, having a set of expectations would seem to be the best route to follow...that way you can focus on the task of caregiving hopefully without getting into the family dynamics, which are usually very far reaching and very complicated..and what may appear one way on the surface, is often very different in reality....
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

For all of you
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

shaking dust off,,, perhaps I am confused. I was liking your writings, and found good useful information then I read "I'd be pretty upset if I hired a professional, any professional, be it . . . and they were talking this way in public, based on what . . . . are you referring to me? If that is the case, based on the fact that the person whom hired me and pays me, this family stuff that is going on in her family is upsetting her, and making her more sick and she is in the hospital right now. I am trying to find the best way to stay out of the affairs of the family, yet, assist the person whom hired me the best I can, and if she said to me ……..xyz call my son/daughter right now, and tell them that they are giving me a heart attack because of them trying to control my business. This is hard. I am not in any way sharing any information. I am trying to solve a very odd issue, and I am wondering how people handle it. If my paid client, is asking me to call her son/daughter to tell them not to call her, she is asking me to sort out her business. I am professional, but the "other duties as assigned makes this very hard to not muddy the waters. This is a website, "I thought" to get advice, and in no way was I trying to shame or slam another person, I am trying to allow an elderly woman peace during her last years, when it is very clear that some of the older one's are trying with all their might to break her down. She is my responsibility, so, when you state to (MMOBusiness), which I do agree, I am doing what I was asked by the person who pays me, and the family lives in other states. How do you stay out of it, when the person paying you is saying "I need you to step in for me, I am too weak. All I am trying to do, is gain professional information to strive for peace for the elderly client that I am currently caring for.
Helpful Answer (2)
Report

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
Related
Questions