Ever get into a pattern of feeling that you need to make others happy and this becomes the total focus of your existence? You feel the familiar grip in your stomach when the person explains the level of stress or unhappiness currently experienced and you know you have no solution. So you search for little things you might do to make a difference. The truth is you can’t make others happy unless they are happy with themselves. Giving and giving and being the self sacrificing caregiver serves no purpose. There is equality in relationships where there is give and take. Sometimes it takes discussion of developing the give and take relationship versus the give and give relationship. Believe it or not, sometimes the person on the receiving end will not even notice when you stop giving. Because perhaps you were giving things you thought were nice to give or things you would like to receive. The receiver may have had absolutely no interest in these items except for the fact that they had interest in you as the giver. Try giving your time and yourself instead of material things. This just may shift the balance in the relationship to more equal footing.

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About Pamela Wilson

PAMELA D. WILSON, MS, BS/BA, NCG, CSA helps caregivers and aging adults solve caregiving problems and manage caregiving needs through online programs, live support groups, and an extensive caregiving library that includes articles, podcasts, videos, and webinars.

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