Getting Started with Professional Caregiver Services

by Kristen Heck, President, Loyal Care

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You clearly understand the benefits of in-home care for an aging loved one, and you’d like to encourage that he or she give it a try. Yet, you anticipate resistance to the idea. How, then, do you approach the issue?

Suggesting a service outside of the home, such as rides to and from events, meetings, and errands may be a great starting point.

Aging in the home: a longer and more fulfilling life.For many people, putting up resistance is a common reaction to the prospect of change. Sometimes a great deal of comfort is derived from things just as they are. Face it, life can get complicated. Our strong urge at times to keep things uncomplicated (or unchanging) might be born out of a basic human need to simplify our lives. And as we age, our resistance to change seems to grow. Status quo, often, brings comfort and a sense of well-being.

Considering, then, the comfort and well-being a home can provide, the results from a 2011 AARP study will come as no surprise:

“Nearly 90 percent of people over age 65 want to stay in their home for as long as possible, and 80 percent believe their current residence is where they will always live.”

Often for that to happen, primary care givers come to find they simply need a break from caring for a loved one, or that a loved one’s life will become more enjoyable through in-home care.

Preparing for the Conversation

First knowing why you might meet resistance at the suggestion of in-home care can be helpful. In its article Caring for the Elderly: Dealing with Resistance, United Methodist Homes suggest resistance to in-home care is based on pride, guilt, fear, anger, and denial. Knowing your loved as you do, you might be able to link one of those feelings to specific circumstances in your loved one’s life—a link that might form the basis of resisting in-home care.

Think it through. Empathizing with your loved one over these feelings might open up pathways of conversation that deepen your relationship, build trust, and open possibilities of using professional caregiver services.

Getting Started

Nancy Kair, Loyal Care’s Services Manager, suggests buying your loved one a gift certificate and propose he or she use it for a service that can be provided outside the home, such as rides to and from meetings, visits with friends, or running errands around town. Using these types of personal assistant or companion care services might at first be preferred over those provided within the home.

At Loyal Care, engaging any of their personal assistance or companion care services is only an agreement, not a long-term commitment. Clients pay for each service used, and they can increase or decrease the number of services used at any time. Nancy says this arrangement works very well, for the client maintains a feeling of control. “In fact,” she says, “we require a minimum of two hours of care, but that can be spread out over one week or one year.”

Making Personal Connections with Professional Caregivers

Nancy also suggests taking your loved one to the office of the in-home care service to meet staff members. She says, “Often first-time users of our services will want to visit our office to find out what we’re all about. Once they see our professional offices and meet our staff, they start to warm up to the idea of in-home care. The opportunity to make a personal connection on neutral ground really makes a difference.”

Does your loved one need a personal assistant or companion? Contact us! We’ll help you get started. Frequently we begin serving clients by taking them to and from meetings or to visits with friends and neighbors.

Related Reading

Caregiver Stress: How to Move Beyond the Burnout by Loyal Care
Why Choose In-Home Care? by Loyal Care
Caring for the elderly: Dealing with resistance by the Mayo Clinic Staff

Loyal Care is a non-medical, in-home provider of private duty care located in Kalispell, MT. We serve individuals, including Medicaid-eligible, who need short-term, long-term, or long-distance home-based care.

For information about our home-based care services, please visit

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