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care – giving and receiving

August 29, 2012

I recently tried to comment on a blog that discussed the fact that we all have more than one aspect to our identity.  For example I am a mother, a daughter, an occupational therapist, a woman living with depression, etc.  Technological ineptitude is the likely cause of my inability to post the comment.  So, I will post it here.  I wanted to draw attention to the fact that many care recipients are also care givers and many care givers are also care recipients. 

The organization for which I work is running it’s first ever summer camp for some of the children we serve who will be entering middle school in September.  Those of us who are employees could be considered the caregivers and we are indeed that in a variety of ways.  However, I have also observed that the supposed care recipients are also care givers to each other and even to me. 

Those who receive care are often de-valued in our society.  That is a problem in and of itself but today I want to talk about the fact that many of us who give care also receive care.  That care isn’t always seen or valued but I sometimes see it and value it.  One child told me that my arts and crafts project was nice.  Another child went after another camper to ensure that the other camper knew that he was welcome at their lunch table.  A different camper complimented his fellow camper on the cookies she had made.  These were all acts of care that were not required but that were generously given and mostly happily received.  

I think giving care is one way that many of us can contribute.  I believe that the intention behind the act of caring is important.  When we are the care giver, we must be attentive to the care recipient to ensure that they want the care and will perceive it positively.    We also need to be open to receiving care (in the same or a different form from that which we have given) from the care recipient.

What are your thoughts and feelings about giving and receiving care – being a care giver and/or a care recipient?



From → labels/diagnoses

  1. I agree that if the care giver is condescending, the recipient may not feel that the act was really care.

  2. Gabby permalink

    Both are important. As long as the recipient feels good about it. Being a visually impaired globetrotter, I welcome care if someone is genuine and not condescending. I enjoy helping others and realise that people are well meaning.

I look forward to hearing your thoughts!

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