Caregiver Bill of Rights

I have the right to take care of myself. This is not an act of selfishness. It will give me the ability to take better care of my loved one.

I have the right to seek help from others even though my loved one may object. I recognize the limits of my own endurance and strength.

I have the right to maintain facets of my own life that do not include the person I care for just as I would if he or she were healthy. I know that I do everything that I reasonably can do for this person and I have the right to do some things just for myself.

I have the right to get angry, be depressed, and express difficult feelings occasionally.

I have the right to reject any attempt by my loved one (either conscious or unconscious) to manipulate me through guilt or anger.

I have the right to receive consideration, affection, forgiveness, and acceptance for what I do for my loved one as I offer these attributes in return.

I have the right to take pride in what I am accomplishing and to applaud the courage it has taken to meet the needs of my loved one.

I have the right to protect my individuality and my right to make a life for myself that will sustain me in times when my loved one no longer needs my full-time help.

I have the right to expect and demand that as new strides are made in ļ¬nding resources to aid physically and mentally impaired persons in our country, similar strides will be made toward aiding and supporting caregivers.