Five Ways to Help a Carer
One of the conversations I have the most is with churches who are desperate to help those living with mental illness – but no idea how. With that in mind, we thought we’d take a look at five ways you can help a carer. Being a carer for someone with a mental health problem can be an exhausting job, even when they love the person they are caring for dearly – so here are some ways to lighten the load.
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Ask – It might sound silly, but before you dive in and do things you think they might need, ask them what would help them best. You might not be able to give them exactly what they need, but you are showing that you want to help. It might even be that you can club together with your small group to help out.
Listen – Give a carer an opportunity to be cared for! Let them have some space where they can talk about anything they want; from this year’s Bake Off to the difficulty of managing when things are really tough.
Be Practical – Whether it be offering to mow the lawn, do the weekly shop or perhaps cook them a meal so that they can have a night off, practical help cannot be underestimated.
Offer Respite – It might not always be possible, but offering to give them a real break for an hour or a day knowing that their loved one is well cared for can be a real life saver.
Be Watchful – A staggering 40% of carers suffer from depression or other psychological problems. Encourage them to take care of themselves as well as they care for others and offer to accompany them to see the doctors if they’re nervous.
This article first appeared at www.thinktwiceinfo.org