Tell Us: Are We Neglected?


Tell Us: Are We Neglected?

androsace-rattling-pot-1464816_640I pay attention to the words others use to describe us (family caregivers).

I recently heard someone describe us as a "neglected" population.

I'm curious as to what you think. Are we neglected?

Share your thoughts in our comments section, below.

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As a husband who truly does love his wife, yes neglected is correct. Most often my wife feels the need to demand not ask for anything. I know she is largely depending on me for a lot. I would have no issues with it if she ASKED instead of demand. I knew we were in for a long road, that part isn't the problem, it's being made to feel as if my needs are less important because I can get up and do for myself. NEGLECTED in many ways only scratches the surface. I don't ask for much and surely didn't ask to be at 47 dealing with issues that would normally be brought on later in life. This started in 2009 and continues, although she is getting help and making some large steps, still does not try to do much of anything for herself. I have my own health issues that are a constant struggle, yet I can never truly be down a day,it's just not allowed.

Jan Larsen-Fendt, RN, BSN

Oh yes. Neglected is a great word. I think another word could be \"invisible.\"\n


I Have heard statistics that indicate caregivers die before their carees in a shockingly high percentage. This indicates that we are neglected by the medical \r\nestablishment, our families and ourselves. One thing that would help. When a caregiver brings in a patient the health care providers should take the vital signs of the caregiver too. Then encourage him or her- take your medicine, see your doctor (in many cases the doctor is the same but the caregiver won't make an appointment for him or herself.


I prefer to describe family caregivers as “needy” .\r\nIts just my opinion that using the word “neglected” makes me a victim, without choices or controll over my life & what happens.\r\n As a responsible family caregiver, I wouldn't refer to myself as neglected. I willingly took on being a family caregiver and the challenges that could come with it. I willingly took on the added ressponiiblities and stresses and assumed responsibiltiy to find ways to meet my caree’s needs along with mine. I had no expectations of others, so I dont feel \"neglected\".\r\n In my opinion, as a family caregiver, it is more about how I may become ”needy” (but not neglected) from the emotional and physical demands of caregiving. I may become “needy” (but not neglected) if I choose unhealthy ways of coping with the stresses of caregiving ( like if I isolate, don't address problems that come up, haven't developed options, waste time, remain un-organized, wont delegate where I can, if I resent family & friends that (for whatever reason) choose not to help, if I haven't built a support network....the list is endless). \r\n I can also become needy (but not negleted), if there is a lack of sufficient resources to draw from in order to alleviate some of my needs ( like money, respite, transportation, housework, repairs),…all that goes into managing the needs of a caree and household, including my own physical & emotional needs so I remain able to care for my caree….again, the list of “needs” could be endless. If I become \"needy\" for whatever reason, then my caree might be \"negelected\" and suffer as a result.\r\n I vision the solution for “needy” family caregivers, is AWARENESS. Awareness is pro active and promotes a positive response (where “neglected” sounds of victim, and often promotes a negative, defensive response). Promoting awareness of our needs, to our family members, friends & neighbors, at work, in our communities, churches, non profit groups, to healthcare professional, govt. agencies. Awarness will give them understanding. Understanding results in compassion and opportunity. Awareness will encourage open minds and creativity, from both the family caregivers and those compelled to assist our needs.


And not just that, but we neglect <i>ourselves</i> consistently.

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