4 Long-Distance Caregiving Strategies
Caring for loved ones that are miles away can be a challenge. Making decisions from a distance, providing loving support, and staying connected to your family member is so very important. We hope these four strategies for long-distance caregiving will provide strength as you navigate this season of life.
1. Visit and Communicate
The best kind of visit is in-person. It’s most memorable and the warm embrace of a hug is unmatched to any other visit. However, it’s not always possible to visit in-person. So talk with your loved one about the best alternative methods to communicate.
Consider buying a device so that you can:
• Call or text
• Facetime or video chat
2. Recruit Trusted Locals
It’s critical to set up a team of individuals that can provide local care for a loved one. Having someone you can communicate with other than your family member directly is helpful as health challenges arise.
Ensure your loved one has established a power of attorney for health and financial decisions down the road. That person should fully understand the family member’s wishes and fulfill those wishes in the future. If this crucial legal step is not done, the court will have to be utilized and it can be a lengthy process.
4. Make a Long-Distance Caregiving Plan
As seasons of life change, there may be a time when you’ll want to visit your loved one for a longer period of time. Prepare for this by:
• Determining your leave policy at your employer;
• Saving money for an extended amount of time off, plus travel costs;
• Coordinate with other family members for arrangements and handling the estate, when the time comes.
Arranging for care from a distance is not an easy task. Getting creative, understanding the situational challenges, and focusing on the details will help ensure the smoothest possible long-distance caregiving experience.