The emotional journey of caregiving isn’t easy, and it often forces caregivers to confront negative emotions, ranging from resentment to guilt. One of the most common emotions caregivers face is jealousy. To stay healthy, you need to be able to address these emotions and find constructive outlets for them. Here are six ways you can handle feelings of jealousy.
1. Acknowledge the Issue
When you bury your negative feelings, it only gives these emotions more power. Eventually, the buried emotions manifest themselves, whether via verbal outbursts or diminished mental health. When you feel jealous of your peers, don’t ignore the feeling. Acknowledging the jealousy is the first step toward handling it. Caring for a senior loved one can be overwhelming at times, but the challenges of caregiving don’t have to be faced alone. Aging adults who require assistance with the tasks of daily living can benefit from reliable elderly home care.Families trust Home Care Assistance to provide the high-quality care their elderly loved ones need and deserve. Our caregivers are trained to help seniors prevent serious illnesses and encourage them to make healthier decisions as they age.
2. Investigate the Feeling
When caregivers are jealous, it’s usually because their friends have more freedom to pursue their interests and ambitions. Being a caregiver leaves little time for the pursuit of individual goals, and it’s natural to envy friends who have fewer constraints on their time. When you feel jealous, don’t wallow in the feeling and try to figure out its source. If you’re jealous that a friend is going on a two-week cruise, the jealousy is probably driven by your lack of free time. If you’re jealous of a friend’s new guitar skills, it might be a sign that you feel unfulfilled without a hobby. By following the jealousy to its source, you may gain emotional clarity, which could help you change your lifestyle for the better.
3. Talk about It
Caregivers need to talk about their feelings. Discuss your emotions with a friend, family member, or therapist. A weekly venting session is one of the best ways to get negative emotions out.
4. Make a Change
Once you recognize the source of your jealousy, you can start to make some lifestyle changes. You may never have as much free time as your friends, but this doesn’t mean you can’t carve out some personal time for yourself. If you want to pursue a new hobby, hire an in-home respite caregiver to watch over your loved one a few times a week. If you want to read more books, listen to audiobooks as you perform your caregiving duties. By establishing goals and finding ways to fit them into your caregiving lifestyle, you can minimize feelings of jealousy. Family caregivers sometimes need a break from their caregiving responsibilities. When they need respite care, Des Moines families can rely on professional caregivers to help their senior loved ones remain safe at home.
5. Find an Emotional Outlet
Some caregivers find discussing emotions such as jealousy with friends and therapists is most effective. Others practice mindfulness or work out their aggression at the gym. Find the emotional outlet that works best for you.
6. Let It Go
You can’t be happy, healthy, or productive if you’re constantly burdened by feelings of jealousy. When you’re having difficulty letting go of feelings of jealousy, close your eyes, breathe in, and let the negativity flow out of your body.Consider hiring a professional caregiver if you need a break from your caregiving duties to relax. Seniors can face a variety of age-related challenges. Though some families choose to take on the caregiving duties, there may come a time when they need a trusted Des Moines in-home care provider. Families sometimes need respite from their duties so they can focus on their other responsibilities, and some seniors need around-the-clock assistance that their families are not able to provide. Home Care Assistance is here to help. Reach out to one of our Care Managers today at (515) 264-2438 to schedule a free in-home consultation.