Guest Articles

Finding Your Own Identity Can Reduce Caregiver Fatigue

By: Jenny Wise

Many parents have an idea of what they want life to be like with their children. There are very few who actually get their ideal lifestyle. Most parents learn how to go with the flow of life with children. They make adjustments as the child grows and matures.

Not all children are neurotypical. Some children, such as those who are on the autism spectrum, require parents to remain caregivers for much longer than what parents of neurotypical children typically do. The constant need to be a caregiver can wear out the parents of a child who is on the autism spectrum.

What is Your Source of Fatigue?

You probably realize that your own fatigue is making it harder to care for your child in the way they deserve. This is because you can’t give them your all if you don’t have anything left. While you might associate caregiver fatigue with the need to sleep, there are often deeper causes for the fatigue.

Determining the source of your fatigue is the springboard to figuring out how to address it. These questions may help you to determine the underlying cause of your fatigue:

  • How physically active are you?
  • How do you feel about your relationships, including your marriage?
  • How is your mental health?
  • How is your financial situation?

Those are four distinct areas that you might need to address in your quest to combat fatigue. Once you know where you need to make some changes that will reduce the fatigue, you can set a plan in motion.

How Can You Improve Your Situation?

Finding ways to improve your situation isn’t always easy, especially when you’re trying to balance self-care and caring for your child. There are some small changes, such as getting mini-bursts of exercise at home that may help. You may also need to make some long-term, bigger changes.

One issue that some caregivers have is that they’ve become so focused on caring for their child that their own identity becomes wrapped up in that duty. Starting a business of your own may help you to feel that sense of pride.

This may also help to address other areas that are contributing to fatigue. It can bring in extra income for the home, but be sure you structure the business properly. For example, an LLC separates your business liability from personal assets. It also has tax advantages and isn’t hard to set up. Each state has specific regulations for LLCs so find out about your state to get started.

What Mistakes Should You Avoid?

Transitioning to a caregiving model that balances self-care and care for your child can be challenging. If you’re someone who’s accustomed to doing everything on your own, it might be difficult for you to lean on your support system.

Consider learning from the experiences of other parents in a similar situation. For suggestions, help, and to realize you aren’t walking this journey alone, visit Dustin’s Dynasty for more resources.

Photo by William Fortunato from Pexels
About the Author

Jenny Wise,  a stay-at-home parent to 4 beautiful children. My husband and I made the decision to home-educate when their oldest was four years old. During this journey, they expanded their family, and faced many challenges along the way. With every challenge, they have experienced great rewards.

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