Caregivers, What about You?
As a caregiver, you spend much of your time, money, and energy taking care of the needs of others. Those who have taken on the role of caregivers for ill or disabled spouses, aging parents, children, or other loved ones with special needs are typically selfless and giving individuals who may not stop to consider their own needs.
As a caregiver, your job is invaluable, but it may exact a heavy toll if you do not seek out the help of others. We want you to know that you are not alone: There are resources available that can make your job as a caregiver easier. It is important to seek out the emotional support of others, either family members or other caregivers, who can understand and empathize with both the rewards and the physical, emotional, and financial burdens associated with caregiving. There are also programs that provide respite care or adult daycare that can allow you to take a much-needed and well-deserved break. State or federal aid and tax credits or deductions may be available to help ease your financial burden as well.
Care for Yourself and Your Loved Ones by Creating an Estate Plan
As an estate planning attorney, we can be another resource you can look to for support. If you are caring for aging parents or other family members with disabilities, it is essential to ensure that you not only address your own emotional and financial health but that you have an estate plan in place that addresses both your needs and the needs of those you care for. We can provide you with the peace of mind that comes from knowing not only that a plan is in place for your future, but also the future of the loved one under your care. Knowing that your loved one will continue to receive loving care, even if something happens to prevent you from continuing to acting in the role of caregiver, will help ease any concerns you have about your loved one’s care.
Name a Guardian
If you are a parent who is acting as a caregiver for a special needs child, you should name a guardian—and more than one alternative—in your will to serve in the role of caregiver if you pass away or are no longer able to care for your child. Otherwise, the decision about who will act as a guardian will be left to the court, which may not reflect your wishes.