Caregivers With Beards

I’m not talking about that pesky wiry hair that pops up out of nowhere on your face – I’m talking about the legion of male caregivers that are stepping in and stepping up to care for their aging parents, partners and children.  Often caregivers are only considered to be female (though that is certainly the majority) and efforts to support and provide comfort are focused on the needs and preferences of women.

We need to rethink this.  Loving care is loving care.  Providing such care is exhausting, frustrating and isolating at times.  It’s even more so for the men who have stepped up to fill this critical need, as they are often overlooked and unappreciated.

I like to say, “Caregiver Appreciation Day is …… Everyday!”.   As I go about spreading the word and reaching out to caregivers across the country, I have had many requests for ideas to show appreciation to male caregivers.  Just as it can be hard to buy meaning gifts for men in general, buying something to provide comfort and a bit of indulgence can be a challenge for someone you might not know very well.

Here are some ideas to send a bit of appreciation to a male caregiver – whether it’s a gift box or a card with a special gift card inside, the message of appreciation will certainly be appreciated.

Caregiver Gift Ideas for Men

  • Edible Treats – Freshly baked cookies and bars, fresh fruit, favorite sweets (from licorice to bubble gum), homemade, local or mail order.
  • Magazine Subscription – if they don’t already subscribe – a special interest magazine can be a great way to relax and unwind.
  • Crossword Puzzle or Word Game books
  • Back Scratcher
  • Sleep Mask
  • Unscented really good moisturizer (Kiehl’s is wonderful)
  • A luxurious lap blanket
  • Gift cards to coffee shops
  • Helpful books (Like The Caregiver Coffeebreak!)
  • Audible Gift certificate – download audio books
  • Netflix Subscription
  • Comfortable good quality ear buds or headphones
  • 10 ft phone charging cord and wall charger
  • Inspiring or uplifting books of short stories or biographies

These ideas would be appreciated by women as well, of course.  My point is that the best way to show appreciation is to understand what would make life a bit easier, bring a bit of joy and truly show a caregiver that you notice and respect what they are doing. It’s all about learning to Take a Break, Before You Break.    Carry on.

 

 

4 Comments

  1. Darcel on February 21, 2018 at 6:05 pm

    My father, a retired still worker who never washed a dish his whole married life, stepped up to the plate after my mother had her stroke. He cooked, he cleaned, he did the laundry, and he made sure my mother made it to all her doctor appointments. As he got older himself, he hired house cleaning help, but he continued on with the rest of his duties. Some of his meals were interesting, but he learned a lot along the way. He did it out of love as he promised my mother that he would never put her in a nursing home. It was one of her greatest fears. My sisters and I pitched in as much as we could. He cared for her for five years before she passed away at home surrounded by her family. His generation was one of the greatest generation of men ever to walk this planet. He has been gone for three years now. And as I have said before, he is the standard to which I hold every man up to. I had the honor of caring for him the last two years of his life. And I would do it again in a heartbeat.

    • Breeda Miller on February 21, 2018 at 7:31 pm

      Darcel, your Dad was a man among men. What more can you say about all that he did for your beloved mother and the example he set for you. So happy you were able to be there for him and provide such loving care. Well done.

  2. Donn King on February 21, 2018 at 6:46 pm

    Thank you for this! I’m one of those male caregivers.

    • Breeda Miller on February 21, 2018 at 7:29 pm

      Donn, please know how much your care and commitment is appreciated. I hope you take good care….of yourself!

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