Most 

Family Caregivers meet at least

3 of 5 characteristics:

1. We don't apply.

2. We don't get training.

3. We don't get paid.

4. We don't get vacations.

5. We don't get benefits.

Because of the stress these characteristics place on a family caregiver, we have to be extremely aware of the need for self-care and time management.  

Self-Care

Unless we put on our own oxygen mask first, we become incapable of taking care of others.

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Time Management

01/

We don't apply for the job.

While we do say, "Yes," we doin't usually look to be the family caregiver.  We don't think as we're growing up, "I want to be a family caregiver when i grow up!"  But we step into the job, sometimes even reluctantly, but with the same commitment we would have if we went searching for this work.

02/

We don't get training for the job.

While there are training programs for professional caregivers, some of which offer some training for family caregivers, we usually get pulled into the job before we have a chance to prepare.  And once we are in the job, we don't usually have the time to get training.

03/

We don't get paid for the job.

A few States have programs that provide an income for people who care for a family member.  These programs are very helpful because many family caregivers find it necessary to leave their jobs to provide full-time care for their family member or friend.  However, most States do not make provision, and consequently, family caregivers are in a very difficult financial position.

04/

We don't get vacations from the job.

Once a family caregiver begins the job, vacations are out of the question unless the family shares in the responsibility.  In the majority of families, one caregiver usually has the responsibility for care.  On rare occasion, the responsibility is shared in the beginning; often the care later shifts to one person.  

05/

We don't get benefits on the job.

On most full-time jobs, employees get medical and dental benefits.  Family caregivers not only miss out on the pay, but for working a full-time schedule, the reward does not include the usual benefits.