Remember that you are not alone. Support groups are a wonderful way to share your feelings and hear about the feelings of others who are going through a similar situation. Support groups can meet in person, by phone, or over the Internet. They may help you gain new insights into what is happening and get ideas about how to cope. Some people like to go and just listen. If you are not comfortable with talking to someone in person or in a group, you can join a support group online and remain anonymous.
Talk to a Counselor
You may be feeling overwhelmed and feel like talking to someone outside your inner circle. Some find it helpful to talk to a counselor, such as a social worker, psychologist, or other professionals. Turning to a leader in your faith or spiritual community can also help you to unload some of your feelings. These types of experts may be able to help you talk about things that you don’t feel you can talk about with friends or family. They can also help you find ways to express your feelings and learn ways to cope that you hadn’t thought of before.
Connect with Your Loved One
Try to remember that you and your loved ones are all going through a struggle and that you need to stick together. Often people become closer as they face challenges together. If you can, take time to share special moments and enjoy the time that you spend together. Try to gain strength from all you are going through, and what you have dealt with so far. This may help you move toward the future with a positive outlook and feelings of hope.
Look for the Positive
Although it is difficult to adjust to the new situation, try finding positive moments. Looking for the good things in life helps people to feel better. For example, think about something that you found rewarding, such as gratitude or care you’ve received, or extra support from others.
Let Yourself Laugh
It’s okay to laugh. In fact, it’s healthy. Laughter releases tension and makes you feel better. Try to remember all the good and funny things that have happened to you in the past. Keeping your sense of humor in trying times is a good coping skill.
Write In a Journal
Research shows that writing or journaling can help relieve negative thoughts and feelings. And it may actually help improve your own health. Writing may help you to express your deepest thoughts and feelings that maybe you are not comfortable to share with others. You can also write about things that make you feel good.
You may feel thankful that you can be there for your loved one or that someone is there for you. You may be glad for a chance to do something positive and give to another person in a way you never knew you could. Some caregivers feel that they’ve been given the chance to build or strengthen a relationship. This doesn’t mean that it is easy or stress-free. But finding meaning can make it easier to manage.
Keep Up Your Routine
Keeping up with some of your regular activities is important for your physical and mental health. If you don’t, studies show that it can increase the stress you feel. Keep it simple and stick with things you do well. Be open to change but don’t give up on things that are important to you. You may have to do things at a different time of day or for less time than you normally would, but try to still do them.