Carer's Week-Again

So, last year I posted during Carer's week and posed the question: Who cares about the Carer's? I received lots of emails and messages in response to it.

Here in Victoria we are currently 'celebrating' Carer's week. Which basically means we all give ourselves a pat on the back or a 'hi-five' for being so wonderful.

*Ahem*

I think I found one event happening here in Ballarat. And that was it.

There has hardly been any mention of it. Anywhere.

So my questions remains. Except this time I am adding a word or two to it: Who the bloody hell cares about Carer's?

Well, the government does of course. We save them 40.3 billion every single year by taking care of our loved ones ourselves. They do gives us $110 a fortnight in return to help us out. So WOW. That is awesome.

Many people will use their words and express that Carer's do an amazing job. Uh-huh. Yet that is usually the extent of their support. A few words dropped here and there. Ok. Cool. Thanks.

I think the reality is that most people are just glad it isn't them. It is easier to just ignore Carers and figure someone else is probably helping them-or worse-that they are 'so strong' they don't need anyone.
Wrong.
Most Carer's would love more support.
They would jump at the opportunity to have someone help out every now and then. To actually offer and not just wait for the Carer to ask.

Money would be bloody awesome too if you are listening government. Because having to beg all the time for money just to have basic stuff is really not cool.

So this Carer's week, if you know someone who is a Carer, instead of giving them a pat on the back, do what Carer's Victoria are suggesting and buy them a coffee (that would work for me...!!).

In all seriousness, at the end of the day, being a Carer, as well as a parent, is who I am. It is bloody hard work (especially when child who is being cared for vomits most nights in the middle of the night). But I will do it with love and strength for the rest of my life. With or without extra money from the government. With or without respite. With or without anyone caring.

I care about Carer's. I know so many wonderful people who are Carer's. Exhaustion may be their current state, but they are all the most generous and loving people I am priviledged to know.

So do you care about Carer's? How do you show it? Is it a phone call or message every now and then to see how they are? Is it a catch up for a cuppa every now and then? Is it just saying you are there if you need them? I reckon if you do that, then you DO care about Carer's!




Comments

  1. I care about carer's.The goverment just suck arse mate they really do.Not much has changed since my sister was born.So thats 33 years ago.They never helped then and they dont know.Respite what's that.oh that's right thats the thing that only happens maybe twice a year for Toni.And I know that I will became a carer in the future when I take my sister in.And would not change it for the world.
    You and David do such a great job Anna and very proud to have both you and David as best friends.Jules xxx

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  2. Jules- Geez you make some great points. I think siblings do a fair amount of caring throughout their lives. I think you are amazing for taking Toni into your life when your parents can no longer do it. Lucky Toni is all I can say!! We love you guys so much and are lucky to have your friendship and support. We couldn't do it without you oxox

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  3. Isn't it funny that really the ones who are giving support to the carers are...other carers. Even though it may be a virtual friendship, we understand the difficulties and respect the hardship others are going through.
    What I wouldn't give to have a free day...and you know how I would most like to spend it? Yes, giving a helping had to someone else in my position.

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  4. I love the fact you have a care-givers day..in the States there is nothing. I really believe that the only people who understand care-giving are other care-givers. As Eric noted, what's a day off?
    I'm somewhat jaded and get put off by "caring" phone calls when people never get off their asses to offer help for a day, bring over a surprise meal or offer to take the kid out. My relatives call to see how things are, but I really never feel they care. I am glad that you are able as a country to celebrate the highest of professions.

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  5. Eric- You are spot on. It is usually the ones who are carers themselves that give the most support. It is because we know the value of helping someone in need.
    Phil- I am a little jaded too about the 'caring' phone calls. Well. I would be. If I ever actually got them. I find that I only get messages if I write something on Facebook. Otherwise no one really bothers (except for a few of my best friends of course).
    I think it is a start having a week dedicated to recognising Carers and celebrating the highest of professions. But most people are not really all that interested. Which frustrates the hell out of me.

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  6. Hey Anna,

    If I meet you I'm more than happy to buy you a coffee. Could probably shout you dinner too, if I haven't driven you away after a hour or so of my company. (insert tongue sticking out smilie here).

    I hope you get a few coffees and pats on the back not just today but other days too.

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  7. I'll buy you a coffee Anna, can we have cake too? I'd forgotten it was carers week actually, there's nothing in the papers about it. It's sad that people don't offer to help or even just give a kind word more often. I've found most people see it just as a part of parenting - you know, they parent like I do (they just miss the rest of the stuff that carers do, like hospitals, specialists, therapy, dealing with organisations etc), but it's the same to them, because it's a child.

    I have a child that functions too highly to get much help (and apparently I cope too well for them to help), but requires assistance to function within society. I don't get any 'caring' phonecalls from family or friends.

    I will endevour to check in with people more often and let them know I'm thinking of them.
    Sharalyn

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  8. Well said Anna!
    We once heard a comedian who joked about when people say 'if there is anything I can do, just let me know', he said to call their bluff and saying 'yeah righto can you mow my lawn tomorrow??' and watch their faces!
    I love when people use their own initiative and help without having to ask, I am so grateful for these people in my life.

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  9. E.- I do wish we lived closer E. I would love to catch up for a dinner/coffee. I don't reckon you would scare me away. Possibly the other way around LOL!! I hope you get more than a pat on the back too.
    Sharalyn-Coffee and cake sounds awesome!!! You raise a couple of great points too. I hate that people assume that if your child can function well in some areas of life then they must be really easy to care for. And yep, people do take things on face value, so if you look like you are coping then apparently you are. I would like to say that sometimes looks can be deceiving. I know that during our recent hospital stay with Ryley, I appeared to be coping, but actually, I was so very far from it, it really wasn't funny.
    I think that I need to get better too at checking in on people. But sometimes I don't have the energy to spend on people who don't bother with me. Does that makes sense???
    Breanna- Haha!! I must remember to call people's bluff sometimes!! Just for comedy reasons of course.

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  10. Anna, I understand. I have run out of energy to spend on others atm, particularly if I'm the one who has to put all the work in. While I think of people a lot, I don't get time to ring all the time, they don't want to be woken at 11pm when I have stopped doing everything for the night.
    I am brilliant at faking the coping thing. Must organise a coffee and cake day.
    Sharalyn

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