Caregiver Newsletter

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Friday March 28 2008 - Issue #372

Welcome to the latest edition of the newsletter.

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From The Editor

Gary Barg - Editor-in-chief

 Away Time

Since 2001, each year around this time, we start sharing your respite solutions in anticipation of our Summer of Respite campaign.

As we are one season away from our seventh Summer of Respite, it occurs to me that respite is like exercise (even if all you do is sit in the yard reading a pot-boiler book). Respite resembles exercise in that the more you do it the better it works for you. So, I got to wondering, just how much are we exercising our respite muscles, anyway?

If you would take a moment to indulge me, the responses just may surprise us all, pleasantly or otherwise.

When did you last take time for  yourself, and what did you do? 

Take care


Gary Barg



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Feature Article

The Roller Coaster of Caregiving

By Jane Cassily Knapp, RN, LCSWC

The decisions to become a caregiver are usually made in crisis situations. We rarely have time to consider the ramifications of these decisions nor do we really fully understand that there are any ramifications. ...Continued

Additional Article:

The Reluctant Caregiver

By Kate Murphy, R.N.

It was easy for me the first time around as a caregiver. Twenty years ago I was much younger and emotionally stronger to carry out the role.  ....Continued


Caregiver Story

A Caregiver�s Memories: How to Deal with Moving On

By:  Patricia St.Clair

It was during that period of time after the hungry feasters snaked through the line of platters, bowls and trays of assorted delights, but prior to the point when the reality of the quantity eaten exceeds the norm.  ...Continued

(Do you have a story? Tell us.)


Give Yourself a Break, Right Now


Doctor appointments that must be scheduled; the constant care and attention your loved one needs, both physically and emotionally;...Continued



My mother has a rare type of Alzheimer's (can't remember the name) that starts in the back of the brain first; effecting the senses rather than memory. Her condition is pretty severe with it now effecting her memory and her ability to get words out. She's nearly blind and can hardly feed herself. I give her showers, dress her, make her food, help her to the bathroom etc. etc. She has mild seizures daily (with them happening most often out in public for some reason) which she takes medicine for, she also has a thyroid problem which means a lot of things but mainly her appetite is nearly non-existent and she is always cold. (which she also takes medicine for)

Anyways, she has very little income which she gets from my father's retirement plan ($140 monthly) and he passed away nearly 10 years ago. Right now I am living with her and my two brothers. I have a that usually brings in anywhere from $800-$1200 monthly. My other makes barely enough to pay his car payment. My bigger brother is a drunk. He's been drinking for 10 years and has massive seizures if he doesn't get enough alcohol. He has no job and can't hold one either.

I am selling my current house and my mother and I are moving into a smaller one which we are renting. My brothers are not moving with us for a few reasons. 1)  They hardly help my mom now. They DO help, just not anything I couldn't do by myself if I didn't work.  2) They can hardly carry their own weight let alone my mom's financially speaking. 3) Not enough space in the new house. 4) They don't clean up after themselves and I'm sick of being house maid.

Rent will be $1095 monthly. She will be paying for rent (which is coming from investments she had piled up,) and I will hopefully be paying for all other bills. She is at a point where she needs someone there whenever she is awake. Hospice care can be expensive. (and I will NEVER put her in a care home EVER) Now I've been thinking lately...

My question is, how much would hospice care cost me when I work 25 hour weeks? I live in Las Vegas Nevada and I am 19, if there is any programs you can recommend please tell me! Any advice or anything you can do to help me figure this out will be greatly appreciated.

(This carenote was taken from our discussion forum and has been scaled down for this newsletter.  To read the entire post, go to our forum at  Select the category "The Need to Share" and the post is "Need Some Serious Advice".) 

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Inside This Issue:

From the Editor
Away Time
Feature Article
The Roller Coaster
 of Caregiving
Caregiver Story
A Caregiver's Memories

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