Usually, no matter how willing a person may be to take on a caring role they may find themselves having to give up things they enjoy. You can easily become socially isolated and sometimes your relationship with the person you care for can also change in unexpected ways which may be difficult to handle.
Should your caring situation come to an end, you will often have further changes to face such as dealing with your grief if the person you cared for has died or adjusting to a new role beyond caring. You may need help to resume the life you had before becoming a Carer.
Opportunities to talk about your situation and the feelings that go with it often don't happen by chance. Counselling can provide this opportunity. Making "time to talk" can give you the chance to talk things over with a counsellor who understands the difficulties and problems that Carers face.
Counselling is not about giving advice, nor is it a magic wand that waves troubles away. But it can give you a private and safe space with an understanding ear to explore ways of thinking about and working through difficult feelings.
Carers NSW Provides free and confidential counselling via the National Carer Counselling Program. They provide short term counselling program providing up to six sessions of counselling to carers. The counselling focuses on issues related to the caring role. For an appointment call 1800 242 636.
Lifeline is another support service. They provide telephone counselling 24 hours per day.
For support call 13 11 14.
There are also other services that provide counselling to Carers. These services may cater to the needs of specific Carer groups often depending on the condition of the person you are looking after e.g. caring for a person with a Mental Illness. Go to Caring Roles on the menu for information about these services.
You may also find that discussing common issues and ways to cope with other Carers in a Carer support group, for example, helps you to handle things better. Carers NSW provide lists of Carer Support Groups. See Important Links.
Making time for yourself to connect with friends, family and other loved ones is also important for your own wellbeing. Asking family and friends to help out and/or accessing respite services can also decrease isolation caused by your caring role.