We “The Sheep” are basically good people who work very hard to make our way through a life that comes with many challenges. The most important unspoken truth we need to face is that when we place our loved ones in any form of a healthcare facility you still have to oversee their care! There is no magical place where everyone will make sure all your loved ones needs are going to be met, and you can not expect those who are providing the care to do more for your loved one than you yourself are capable of doing.
Imagine for just one moment that you with everything you have going on in your daily life, suddenly find yourself faced with the responsibility of caring for a loved one who requires 24-hour care. You love this person with all your heart, and as much as you would like to you are unable to provide them with the care they require. At first you try to keep up with every need. You put on your super cape, you try to convince yourself that you should be able to do this too!
Life continues to press forward dropping one task after another onto your already overloaded plate. You find yourself failing at providing the one you love with the level of care you would like to give them. Your exhausted both physically and mentally, lets not forget that emotionally you are practically hanging on by a thread! Finally you make the decision to place your loved one into a facility that assures you they can provide everything you were unable to accomplish. This is the point where you believe you much like Jack in “Jack And The Beanstalk,” that you have purchased magical beans. Someone who is a complete stranger is going to come into your life, and magically provide your loved one with impeccable care. Your worries are over!
The reality is that this is a deception used to help you deal with your guilt over not being able to meet your loved ones needs. As “sheep” we accept this lie, after all it’s much easier to have someone else to blame when improper care occurs. The unspoken truth is that most paid care providers are completely overwhelmed in their jobs. Facilities are usually severely understaffed, and each care taker may be given 9 or more residents who require full care at a time. Keep in mind that although this is their chosen profession establishments place an almost impossible amount of work in a very limited window of time. Not to mention that they are trying to get those in need of this care to cooperate with the tasks at hand.
It’s my opinion that this is the environment that breeds the undesirable “Disciples of the Grim Reaper .” These are the workers who seem to be able to turn off their humanity in order to cope with the great demands imposed onto them by the facility’s corporate staff. To keep up with the job’s demands workers have to cut corners. In care taking terms this means less time for toileting, feeding, bathing, and oral hygiene! It also means that residents are more subject to rough physical encounters, harsher verbal exchanges, human dignity issues become of less importance for the sake of meeting the time requirements. Caretakers are under the scrutiny of corporate employees, nursing staff, and family members constantly, in addition to meeting your loved ones needs.
The huge problem is that if you have a caretaker who wants to give their residents/patients good care you will either emotionally/physically burn them out causing them to leave this profession, or worst of all you will turn them into one of “The Disciples of the Grim Reaper!” 😉