Valentine's Day is a holiday for couples. This holiday can be very painful when a loved one doesn’t have their husband or wife by their side. For your widowed mom or dad, they could be experiencing this pain. Watching others celebrate with their spouses can trigger deep sadness, and even depression, in your aging loved one.
By Jim Stinson, Director of Spiritual Life
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Our entire lives are built around relationships. Each of us has a sphere of influence within which we maintain relationships with family, close friends, casual friends, co-workers, acquaintances and others. These connections meet essential needs in our lives….the need to feel wanted and loved, the need to feel recognized and valued, and the need to feel supported and cared for.
As your loved one ages, a reduction in cognitive ability will likely occur. Small declines and short-term memory loss are common, but you can help prevent this. The brain is a muscle, and like any muscle, it needs to be exercised.
The holiday season is a time of light-heartedness, gift giving and family gatherings. It’s also a time when many caregivers feel resentful and often times a little worn down. While everyone is enjoying the hustle and bustle of the season, caregivers tend to be bogged down with extra obligations while caring for the growing needs of an aging parent.
Experts say it comes with the territory. The odds are if you’re caring for elderly parents for any length of time without much assistance-- it’s a given--you HAVE caregiver stress. No one tells you going into this role that part of the plan of caring for the well-being of a loved one is also taking care of your own.