As a caregiver are you experiencing feelings of exhaustion, frustration and grief? Do you feel that you are always having to “hold it all together”?
In honor of National Family Caregiver Month, we want to remind all caregivers how important it is to take the time to nourish and surround yourselves with support. Caring for someone with physical and mental health issues is challenging and requires patience and compassion.
Family caregivers spend countless hours providing unpaid care to their parents, spouses, partners, children and other relatives. Over half of these caregivers are also balancing a career and many are raising children and maintaining a household. This role can be overwhelming, stressful and taxing to physical and emotional health. While often difficult, it is essential for caregivers to find time and space to be supported by a friend, a trusted therapist, support group, anything that allows one to soften and let go for a moment so they are able to come back feeling more energized and able to embody that supporting role.
Dance/movement therapy (DMT) is a supportive intervention based on the principle that movement reflects patterns of thinking and feeling. Ideally, participation in a DMT session or group will cultivate a support system, enhance coping skills, and increase overall well-being. As such, DMT is an effective and useful modality for caregivers.
Stay tuned for my next post as I demonstrate how DMT can offer a glimmer of hope to family caregivers, giving them the time and space to share their stories, to feel connected and to let go.
- Berrol, C.F. (1992). The neurophysiologic basis of the mind-body connection in dance/movement therapy. American Journal of Dance Therapy, 14(1), 19-29.
- Schmais, C. (1985). Healing processes in group dance therapy. American Journal of Dance Therapy, 8(1),17-36.
- Caregiver Action Network
- Family Caregiver Alliance
- Together In This- Online Caregiver Resources
- Deborah Shouse- writer, speaker, editor and dementia advocate