Posted in Caregiving

Caregiver Learning Curve

Welcome to Caregiver Friday!!

Since I got to Buffalo for this consulting job I’m doing I’ve had a steep learning curve.  I’m a guy that doesn’t really like numbers; all I remember from accounting in college is that debits on the left and credits on the right.  I don’t balance my own check book (no I don’t believe if I have checks I must still have money), and yet my day revolves around balancing an invoice register…this I’ve had to learn.

On the other hand, my caregiving skills I believe are innate.  Maybe it’s a primal thing and I’ve just got those animal instincts well ingrained in my body, mind, and soul.  I’m on most of my family and friends Durable Power Attorney for Healthcare because they all know that I will be able to carry out their wishes if necessary.  I was a Resident Assistant (RA) in college in a dorm of freshman when I was a senior.  I was a big brother to a young boy with severe psychiatric disorders and the list goes on and on.

So is caregiving nature or nurture?  I believe it’s both.  There are those that will inherently assume the caregiving role and when the time comes the act of caregiving may be a bit easier, not the actual emotional/spiritual turmoil of someone they love become ill, just the role of caregiving.  Those who learn to be caregivers have that steep learning curve I mentioned at the beginning of the post.  They are just as effective, it just takes a bit more work in the beginning to nurture that inner caregiver till it blossoms.

I want to be clear, one isn’t any better than the other; they’re just different.  I just assume that I’ll be the caregiver for my parents someday even though my brother lives 30 minutes from them and I live 12 hours from them.  It’s an unspoken (well at this point it’s pretty spoken) understanding that caregiving is in my court.

Just wanted to open the discussion to see what your experience has been in the caregiving arena.  Any thoughts?  You can mail your ideas, questions and stories to


I've lived my life in service to others. I'm focused on mental health and how it impacts our relationships, culture, and society. Through creative expression and narrative I believe we can impact change.

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