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Old 07-27-2009, 07:13 AM   #1
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dolejaly HB User
caregivers too comfortable

I am a mother of a 18 yr old boy that suffers from Traumatic Brain Injury caused from being severally shaken at 8 months of age by a b/f at the time while under his care for 20 minutes. (Long story)....But the end results are he is in need of long term care for everything, he is like a 12 - 18 months old infant and is dependant on everything from others. For years I have always done my own care for him, plus I have 3 other children 1 which is older and 2 younger siblings. I have always tried to hold a good balance between all my children and to do what every I can to make life as close to normalcy as I could. But, a few years ago my own health had started interfering w/ the daily care of my son among other things in my life and I started hiring in home health care to help w/ my son. I have had friends, family and caregivers that are contracted through the agency I contract through for in home help and each time it seems to be the same problem w/ the caregivers, they become too comfortable and forget that this is a paying job.

I like for people to feel comfortable in my home and I do what ever I can to work w/ each caregiver w/ scheduling that is convenient for them, if it is meal time i invite them to eat w/ us, family time of course I pay for them to come along whether it be an amusement park or a trip to the zoo, but the problem is they get too comfortable and forget what their job is.

They come in late anywhere from 10 minutes to 45 minutes late, they call at that last minute when they can't show up, if they call at all, they tell me after they are here that they have to leave early for what ever reason, which makes it very hard for me to make any appt for anything or time out w/ the other 2 younger children or any kind of plans. I find my son sitting in his chair more(recliner chair) instead of finding things for him to do, mind you he doesn't do much as far as activities, but he loves the outdoors. He does love to listen to scary movies and even w/ that the staff over do it and put in movies constantly and talk on the phone or constantly talk to me. The bottom line is they act as if they are doing me a favor and I comply or they will quit. In some ways yes they are helping me, but they are making good money for what they do, so it is not like they are taking away from their own time for free.

How do I get them to realize that this is a paying job and they do have requirements and expectation in what they are suppose to do?

With my own health issues it makes it very hard for me to do many of the daily jobs, my son is actually taller than I and because I have problems w/ my right side going numb I have actually fell w/ him when he was having a seizure and also fell just because of my own health issues. I had a hard time accepting help from others for the care for him and came to realize that me needing help is not failing him, but I am helping him, but now I feel he is not getting the care he needs because once again they feel way too comfortable in my home. I don't want to act like this is just a business deal and do want them to feel comfortable in the home while they are here, but how do I draw the line with out upsetting my staff and they up and quit. It was hard enough to find anyone that wants to help take care of the disabled so I am leery on losing what I do have....I feel I am in a tight spot.....

Last edited by dolejaly; 07-28-2009 at 07:17 PM.

 
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Old 07-30-2009, 07:57 PM   #2
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Re: caregivers too comfortable

Contact the agency that they are affiliated with....place a complaint...ask for a replacemant.
I will admit that I am close with several of my clients...but I also keep the relationship on a business level if that makes sense.
I don't take advantage of them and be a 'no-show' for my job.
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Old 07-30-2009, 08:49 PM   #3
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dolejaly HB User
Re: caregivers too comfortable

Quote:
Originally Posted by cherie57 View Post
Contact the agency that they are affiliated with....place a complaint...ask for a replacemant.
I will admit that I am close with several of my clients...but I also keep the relationship on a business level if that makes sense.
I don't take advantage of them and be a 'no-show' for my job.
Unfortunately the agency is short handed now and it could take several weeks to several months to get another staff. Yes, that made perfect sense as being close but yet responsible of your job. That is what I am trying to get from my staff., I even done a staff meeting and addressed the problem and reminding them all that yet I want them to feel comfortable here I want them to remember they are here for my son and his needs and that they are getting paid for his care, whether it be recreational,grooming, feeding, etc....and of course each staff can point out the wrongs of the other staff but not see what they are doing. My son loves them and gets excited when they come in, so I really don't want to replace them, I just want them to understand w/ out offending them...sounds crazy and impossible huh?...LOL..I thought about writing up a daily schedule of activities for them to follow so maybe they will concentrate more on activities w/ him, but that still don't stop the being late or a no show....when they hired in each staff gave the other a phone number to contact them and they are to find replacement if they could not come in and to please call me and let me know ahead of time if this occurs..I don't think that was too unreasonable, was it?

 
Old 07-31-2009, 05:33 AM   #4
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cherie57 HB User
Re: caregivers too comfortable

I really feel that you need to go to the agency that is helping you-or search for another agency.
The idea for posting of schedules of things to do daily is very good! Make sure that they adhere to it.
You have every right to know if someone will be a 'few minutes' late...and yes a replacement needs to be found if the that person can't be there.
You hired them to care for your son-put your foot down and tell them if they can't do the job-they will have to be replaced. I'm sure they'll blame one of the others.

I hope this helps.
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Last edited by cherie57; 07-31-2009 at 05:33 AM.

 
Old 07-31-2009, 07:30 AM   #5
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dolejaly HB User
Re: caregivers too comfortable

Well one thing I have done recently to catch their attention is I told them that I called the agency to see if they could find me 1 more staff member, but their hours would have to be cut beings this new person would need at least 10 - 20 hrs a week(otherwards, worth their while)..I am only allowed so many hours a month for in-home staffing...They both made it to work on time and as they were scheduled, but only for a short period of time.

It is really hard to find replacement for the morning hours beings he does go to school even in the summer time, which the morning staff is in only for an hour and not to many people will take on that shift, which I don't blame them, its not worth their time or gas,,so again I feel the staff has got me over a barrel on making a call judgement. Mornings are my hardest w/ my pain from my health issues or I would just do it myself.

It seems to be an ongoing issue w/ this problem even w/ other staff that I have had in the past years. I even lived in a different county and my workers were doing that. How do I be friendly and make them feel comfortable in my home, but yet make them realize this is a job and they can be replaced? Again my son loves the workers he has now, and he has a hard time when we change over staff and goes through behavioral issues and refuses to eat for awhile. He is strictly baby bottle fed. My son was really heart broken over the loss of a staff about a year ago that was w/ him for almost 2 yrs and still if he hears his name his face lights up and gets excited, unfortunately this staff member don't come around and see him at all, and he is his cousin. Why is family harder to work with? Do you have any suggestions on what I could talk to the staff about that would not get them mad enough to quit but to understand the importance of this job. One is a family member now.

 
Old 07-31-2009, 11:24 AM   #6
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Choice HB User
Re: caregivers too comfortable

In the future you should not hire family. It would seem the logical thing to do, being that he is already familiar with them, and they love him, but family members will never respect you as an employer the way a stranger will (should). They look at this as if they are doing you a favor rather than as a job.

You feel like you have to make them comfortable in your home or they will quit. I have never had a job where my employer worried about my comfort. As long as you provide them with what they need to do their job, then you've done your part.

In the past, I used agencies and private individuals as caregivers for my parents. It is hard to find good people, and I feel for you. I would look at other agencies, private and government funded, volunteers (good for those short morning slots), retired ladies at your church, always ask doctors, nurses, your hair stylist, everyone you come in contact with.

The schedule is a great idea. Seeing it in writing (I'd make them sign it) makes it more of a "real" job to them.

If and when you do hire someone new, start off on the right foot by acting like an employer rather than the hostess.

 
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