Caring can lonely and isolating. You may not want to burden friends and family talking about how you feel. You may feel as if friends don’t pop round anymore for a chat, you’re not invited to social gatherings as much and that you have no-one to confide in. Many carers feel guilty if they have negative thoughts or lose patience but this is all normal and part of caring.
It’s important to look after your own emotional wellbeing while you are caring. While stress is part of everyday life, it can make it hard to cope with the demands of caring and place extra demands on your relationships.
One in five of us will at some point suffer from depression. Usually this is a temporary low (linked to bereavement, illness of a family member etc), however, sometimes it can go on to play a large part in our lives.
Looking after yourself means knowing how to spot the signs of stress and depression early. Then, how to treat it. It’s not a sign of weakness or that you need to stop caring, it’s just a sign that you need to be kind to yourself.