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Caregiver's bill of rights...

KathiM's picture
Posts: 8077
Joined: Aug 2005

I shared my life with 2 special needs daughters, one of which has since passed. But, as part of a program designed to support we caregivers, I was given this "Caregivers Bill of Rights".

I have this posted on my fridge....it helps me, especially during my cancer caregiving with my mom and sister. Maybe it can help you, too!


I have the right to take care of myself. This is not an act of selfishness. It will give me the capability of taking better care of my loved one.

I have the right to seek help from others even though my loved one may object. I recognize the limits of my own endurance and strength.

I have the right to get angry, be depressed, and express other difficult feelings occasionally.

I have the right to reject any attempts by my loved one (either conscious or unconscious) to manipulate me through guilt and/or depression.

I have the right to take pride in what I am accomplishing and to applaud the courage it has sometimes taken to meet the needs of my loved one.

I have the right to receive consideration, affection, forgiveness, and acceptance from my loved one for what I do, for as long as I offer these qualities in return.

Hugs, Kathi

Posts: 109
Joined: Feb 2006


Thanks for the posting. I will print this out and put up on my fridg today, its says it all.I share my life with my husband who has Stage Iv Colorectal. This caregiver job (as I call it) it the toughest one yet.Would do it all over if needed. Hey where do we get a pay raise (lol)



davidsonxx's picture
Posts: 137
Joined: Mar 2007


I love this. It puts into words what I have struggled to express to others in the caregiver role. I also am going to print this and keep it handy. Thanks for the post.


Anonymous user (not verified)

Thank you for sharing this.
I have been caregiver to my parents for over 11 years (we lost Mom 3 years ago but I still look after Dad). I knew these things to be true but could never have said it so well.

Posts: 4
Joined: Sep 2007

Hi Kathi,
This is the coolest thing I have come accross yet. It is so truthful and so right. It is unbelievabley unfair how crappy a hand you got dealt. But it does sound like you try to take the best out of every day that is a gift. I know there are some days I question what kind of a god would do this and then I look around and see how beautiful everything is around me (I live close to the wilderness). I think god is trying to tell us something and no one is listening. He can't actually come out and say anything because that would mess up free will. But if we listen to gods creatures, nature, maybe we could find the answer.
God Bless and your in my prayers

lindachris's picture
Posts: 175
Joined: Aug 2007

It's amazing to me how practical advice and prayerful strength intersect in so many of these discussions. But this little list is something else altogether, sort of a personal cheering section. Which manifests what everyone on this list is going through in different ways.

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