CARING FOR THE CAREGIVER
Relationships & Caregiving
If you are caring for someone with cancer, it means big changes in your life. Know that every situation and person is different. Caregiving isn’t just about picking up medicine, driving to appointments or reacting to treatment-related side effects. It is about doing everything you can to help the person living with cancer have a better quality of life. Physically, emotionally or mentally, you are on call to meet those needs, and that is an extremely challenging role. The impact of caregiving It’s okay to acknowledge that caregiving for your loved one has had a significant impact on your life, including having difficulty sleeping, getting sick more often, facing financial difficulties, valuing life and your loved ones more, and feeling more irritable or sensitive. If you feel unsettled or angry, seek out a professional (social worker, counselor, therapist) who will listen and help. A patient navigator can help you find resources to support you. Local and online resources City of Santa Fe’s Senior Services offers caregiver support, including respite care, education, emotional support and home management. Programs are on hold during the pandemic. For current information, call Theresa Trujillo at 505-955-4745 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. The New Mexico Aging and Long-term Services Department offers caregiver services and support, depending on your and your loved one’s needs. There may be different professionals who can assist you. To find out what resources might be available to you, call 1-800-432-2080 or visit https:// www.nmaging.state.nm.us/ and look under the section, “Caregivers.” The American Cancer Society provides caregiving information and resources, including an online, interactive guide. Visit cancer.org and look under “Treatment and Support” or call 1-800227-2345. AARP has an extensive amount of information on caregiving, including a free Prepare to Care: A Resource Guide for Families available on AARP’s website: aarp.org/caregiving/prepare-tocare-planning-guide-thank-you. Call 1-888-687-2277 for more information.