"Being both a caregiver and a volunteer, I am often able to connect with the situation and challenges of home care, because even if I have not faced some of the problems others talk about (and boy, there is a wide range of problems out there), I can extend my experience to imagine it.
This volunteer’s comment made me realize that perhaps I should do something about this gap of understanding that non-caregiver volunteers experience. I also realized that when some volunteers ended up sounding preachy, insensitive or critical, they may just be naïve and ignorant."
"I wrote a short note to describe what dementia home care involves (my original draft was five times this length, but I reduced it to keep it at a readable length). I think anyone in contact with home caregivers may find it useful to get some idea of what caregivers are experiencing." (in India)
"When I started changing my way of talking to my mother, it did not happen overnight. Lapses were frequent in the beginning, then reduced. I could manage the new way of communicating easily for some types of situations but not for others.
I required constant mental reminders and lip-biting and nail-pressing-into-palms, heaps of deep breaths whenever my old habit would surface and I would determinedly set it aside and behave in a new way. I often caught myself mid-sentence and corrected my way of talking.
It was exhausting work, but as the payoff started getting visible (better communication, fewer “episodes”), my mistakes reduced. Hey, I would not even call them mistakes; they were part of my learning/ transforming curve. They were unfortunate incidents, but I emerged, as did my mother and I will neither deny and hide them, nor feel guilty about them. I did my best in my own way."