How can an unrelated to the family, live-in caregiver help in mending the broken chain of communication and the absence of shared caregiving.

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I saw this in today's paper and immediately thought of you, Z! The article was about the proposed canonisation of G K Chesterton, the writer, who observed:

"It takes three to make a quarrel; the full extremity of human fury has not been exhausted until some friend has tried tactfully to intervene."

Just something to bear in mind... :)
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Reply to Countrymouse
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Hi Zoewin.

I would suggest you go about it as porcupines are said to make love - very carefully!

The difficulty is the huge risk of something you say being misunderstood or misinterpreted by the resident or primary caregiver.

But your main responsibility is to your client. I hope the stress of the rest of the family's dynamic isn't making your job - not to mention your client - miserable?

I know that when I fell out (BIG time) with my sister in law and brothers, and the incident was witnessed by our respite caregiver who was there at the time, she was brilliant. She didn't discuss the specific problem we'd fought over, but she was hugely supportive.

If the opportunity comes up for you to say positive things about, for example, making a phone call or passing on information, then do. But don't risk undermining his or her confidence and trust in you.

It's incredibly difficult, and I am sorry to remember that people can behave incredibly badly within families. Keep as much distance as you need to.

And do please tell us more, if you'd like to share.
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If you are this caregiver, I’m not so sure you should try to mend familial fences. I know it’s very difficult to just step back, but this is something the family themselves need to resolve. Do you have one person you communicate with about the person you are caring for? If so, and if this is the person who hired you, you only need to answer to them. If the person you are caring for is upset about the family disharmony, speak with that person about that as well. Even though your intentions are good, the family may not see it that way.
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