Tell Us: What’s the Worst Caregiving Advice You’ve Received?

I’m always amazed at the unsolicited advice others will offer me.

I’m sure you can relate.

So, I’m wondering: What’s the worst caregiving advice you’ve received? It could be a suggestion from a health care professional or a friend or even a complete stranger. It was probably well-meaning but yet it made you think:

“Are you kidding me?”

So, I’d love to know: What’s the worst caregiving advice you’ve received? Please share in our comments section, below. We’ll choose a winner next Wednesday to receive one of our Disrupt t-shirts (its message: “I’m a Family Caregiver, Our World Is Better Because of Me”). (Congrats to RoaringMouse for winning our t-shirt. Enjoy!)


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About Denise Brown

I began working with family caregivers in 1990 and launched in 1996 to help and support them. Through my blog, I share words of comfort and offer coping strategies and tips. I also write opinion pieces about recent research, community programs and media coverage of caregiving issues. I've written several caregiving books, including "The Caregiving Years, Six Stages to a Meaningful Journey," "Take Comfort, Reflections of Hope for Caregivers" and "After Caregiving Ends, A Guide to Beginning Again." You can purchase my books and schedule a coaching call with me in our store.

6 thoughts on “Tell Us: What’s the Worst Caregiving Advice You’ve Received?

  1. Avatar of ejourneysejourneys

    Holy crap. What terrible advice haven’t I received?

    From a friend: Kick my partner out.

    From a retired lawyer: Abandon the house.

    From my partner’s former therapist (who mistakenly assumed I was my partner’s legal guardian just because I hold POA): give my partner a week to choose what items she wants to keep, and then call a clean-up service to come in and work unsupervised while I stay with her in a hotel room. If I didn’t do this within two months’ time, the therapist would report me to DCF, I would be arrested, and my partner would be taken away. (I subsequently received a profound verbal apology from the therapist, after I had checked with our local sheriff’s office and my lawyer.)

    From a sheriff’s deputy, responding to my worry about my partner’s impulsive behavior on long drives (which has included sudden yelling, jostling my arm at the wheel, squirting windshield wiper fluid, and undoing her seat belt to squirm and get stuff from the back seat while I was in a center highway lane, unable to pull over): “Just put her in the back seat and keep her distracted.” (My partner’s behavior has improved considerably, but she can still be disruptive at times.)

    Then there were all the health care professionals who made us jump through all sorts of hoops to get evidence in favor of getting my partner disability (“Here’s what you’ll need…”), while omitting — I assume from sheer ignorance — the fact that those records had to date from a critical time period that had already passed (this info comes from the third disability lawyer we’ve tried). We have no such records from those dates.

  2. Avatar of Old BillyOld Billy

    It wasn’t given to me directly but after Dad’s last hospital stay Mrs Munchausen suggested to one of our nieghbors; We should get rid of our dogs because of their dander and Dad could trip over them.

    She doesn’t like our dogs because after she fattens up the squirrels by feeding them, they make easy prey for Clance & Theodore. The squirrels reaction time slows and they lose theire natural fight or flight instinct.

    Clance & Theodore were Dad’s best companions providing hours of entertainment. Dad could excite them with certain keywords. “Touchdown! , Hey! Hey! Hey!, Holy Cow!, Moon, Squirrel” and others Theodore is especially prone to this tactic. The dogs sat at Dad’s side for every meal. Clance sat in his lap whenever Dad was in his favorite chair. In the last two weeks Clance spent every moment by dad’s side even sleeping with him at night. That was unusual because she normally slept with Ma.

    Yeah right Dad’s life was already strained might as well deprive him of his best friends and happiest moments.

  3. Avatar of Roaring MouseRoaring Mouse

    Now that he’s had his accident; you need to divorce him. You can’t handle a baby and him at the same time!

    People who do what you do are automatically depressed. It comes with the job.

    You are not getting enough sleep. Start using sleeping pills. “But I sleep very well when I get it.” But you need the pills to sleep longer. “Longer only comes when someone’s there to help.” See what I mean?!

    Infections on people like him can’t be treated. He’s got six months. You need to get your affairs in order.

    Yes, I saw the 2″ lump protruding from his back. There’s nothing wrong with him. Don’t you think you are bored?

    We can’t accomodate you here. Why don’t you move out of this state?

    EJ…I can so relate!

    Old Billy…Your’s were funny!

    The Roaring Mouse

  4. Avatar of carlaschuchmancarlaschuchman

    Get this one…

    What a Doctor said to me while I was rolling Mema in a wheelchair and Smokey was walking up ahead with the nurse, (same doctor did their surgeries, scheduled some follow ups at same time), “One of them needs to die to give you a break.”

    I don’t want to see him again…


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