As caregivers, we notice that our loved one often feels like a burden and does not always feel the love that they should. Healing the body is linked with healing the soul and it is the soul that suffers when people are not treated with love or do not feel it. The emotional pain for the person who is ill often feels worse than the physical pain. As a caregiver, it is important that you are aware of how the person you are caring for is reacting to your interaction. Physical and emotional touch can bring comfort and help a person feel accepted.
Showing concern and awareness as a caregiver shows you believe in your loved one. Some illnesses will leave a person outwardly looking healthy but internally, there can be chronic pain or chronic symptoms. In this case, people may have a hard time believing these individuals are sick at all. It is easy for us to show doubt which increases the feeling of burden and makes your loved one feel alone. Battle this feeling by thinking about what your loved one is feeling. Let them know you see how hard they are trying and how strong they are to combat their illness. Simple acknowledgement helps the person feel comforted and eases their burden.
-by Nicole B., community educator