Why Speaking Up For Your Needs Matters


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Manage episode 283874348 series 2836312
By Family Caregivers of BC. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.

In a healthy relationship, the needs of both people are important - it’s a two-way street. Good communication is the key to making sure everyone’s needs are met. Whether it is between you and a spouse, or with your friends, successful relationships are all about communication. In today’s episode, we share how for caregivers, relationships with others can be more complex than usual. It can be hard to find ways to speak up for your own needs. If you are the primary caregiver, recognizing your own need for support might be difficult - particularly if the care receiver is uncomfortable with the idea - but still, you need to make these choices for yourself.


  • Relationships are complex, so resentment, sadness, and guilt can still exist in any happy relationship; which is all very normal when you are a caregiver.
  • It’s not uncommon with men to be uncomfortable with diagnosis and want to keep that a secret.
  • The whole caregiving relationship depends on the caregiver being well.
  • There is joy in caregiving, but there’s also the sadness.
  • Caregivers focus a lot on the practical aspects, but what’s the hardest part is doing the emotional work or anticipatory grief.
  • Through talking about the caregiver’s feelings and needs as well as the care recipient, helps the recipient see the importance of letting people help.
  • 8:15 Strategies for caring for yourself as a caregiver.
  • Caregivers can still be responsible for their own experience while balancing the need for others.
  • Choosing freely to be a friend caregiver.
  • The learning curve of being a caregiver is like being in medical school.
  • 11:59 How a friendship can change when a friend becomes a caregiver.
  • Caregivers don’t know what to do and how to ask for help because it’s all so new.
  • Community shows that we can do things better together than individually and alone.
  • Real challenge is finding out what the caregiver friend needs and then matching what friends are willing to do and give.
  • 21:04 How the trust relationship by telling the truth restores the sense of equity or equality before being a caregiver.
  • 22:57 Lots of Helping Hands to have an organized approach to caregiving by using an online care calendar.
  • Opening up a conversation with anybody can be helpful because people need to give as much as they need to receive.


“Relationships are complex, so resentment, sadness, and guilt can still exist in any happy relationship; which is all very normal when you are a caregiver. It takes work to overcome the negatives by seeking help, communicating with your loved one, and having the self-awareness to put it all into perspective.” - Jodie

“I have to take care of myself. Because if I'm not taking care of myself, who's going to take care of you?” - Nancy to her husband Ted

“You are free to ask for anything. But you must also ask for everything that you need. And we agree to only give what we're capable of giving.” - Jim’s principle to share the truth

“The agreement is you tell us the truth about what you need. We will tell you the truth about what we can deliver. Once we got to that point, everybody relaxed, and we got back into the normal rapport because we have a model that we can talk to.” - Jim

“I felt a little uncomfortable in intervening in what could have been seen as a family affair, a family issue. But I overcame that because I realized the benefit of us all working together, rather than working independently and duplicating some efforts and leaving gaps and others.” - Jim

Links Mentioned In the Episode

Lotsa Helping Hands - online care calendar

Connect With Us!

Family Caregivers of BC Website

Visit us at our office: #6 – 3318 Oak Street, Victoria, BC V8X 1R1 Hours are Monday through Friday, 8:30 am and 4:00 pm.

Telephone: (250) 384-0408 Toll-Free Line Within BC: 1-877-520-3267 Fax: (250) 361-2660 Email: info@familycaregiversbc.ca





Thank you!

BC Ministry of Health - Patients as Partners Initiative

Organized Sound Productions

12 episodes