Caring for a loved one can be a challenging learning curve and just as you get used to things, they can change all over again.
You don’t have to do it alone. Whether you’re starting a new journey, feeling overwhelmed, or could benefit from people who understand what you’re going through, finding connections on social media outside of your regular circles can be a valuable resource. There are plenty of people out there who have gone through similar things, worked through the same questions, and even found shortcuts so you don’t have to learn the hard way.
More importantly, having a sense of community can help you take care of yourself which can sometimes fall by the wayside when you are focused on the care of others. There are tons of great in-person support groups, but if you don’t live near one, don’t have the time, or just want to connect with people from the comfort and privacy of your own home- it’s time to look into some options online. Below are some great places to share your joys, successes, frustrations, questions, and wisdom.
Quora is a question and answer social media site with tons of great advice and thoughtful responses. You can subscribe to topics to let the site know what your interests and expertise are to get notifications when they find something new you might like. Be sure to subscribe to the following topics and browse previous questions for great insights.
Reddit is a great forum for questions and deeper discussions. Because the website is anonymous, it also creates a space to deal with tough topics that you may be embarrassed to ask elsewhere. There are ‘subreddits’ or sections dedicated to specific topics for all kinds of interests. Subscribing to the following subreddits will bring you into some great discussions and before you know it you may be starting your own!
Facebook is a huge social media site with specific groups dedicated to all kinds of topics. The groups listed here are all private, meaning you have to be a member to see and engage with posts so the conversations you have there won’t be shown to friends or family on their news feeds unless they are also members. You likely already have a facebook account, so joining these groups will bring great resources to you where you already are. New groups are popping up all the time so do a quick search for the specific conditions that relate your situation to find even more specific support.
“Let us talk about ourselves, family, friends, love ones who are elderly, and as caregivers- caretakers sharing our thoughts and views may lift burdens.”
“Memory People™ is an Alzheimer’s/dementia and memory impairment support and awareness group created by Rick Phelps, a patient himself, diagnosed with Early Onset Alzheimer’s disease at the age of 57. Rick recognized the need for support and information, a place where all those who are affected by dementia can share together and find understanding.
Here in Mp we all walk this together, patients, caregivers, advocates, family members and professionals, sharing our journeys with each other, seeking comfort and understanding, and receiving support and helpful information. We don’t talk about miracle cures or false remedies here. We share about the reality of dementia and memory impairment, and through support and education, we find the ability to take another step each day in this journey. Memory People is a safe, comfortable place to find real-time support for those touched by dementia-related diseases and any type of memory impairments, including TBI, etc. Here in Mp we are “bringing awareness, and changing lives…”
Dementia Caregivers Support Group
“We are here for caregivers taking care of Dementia and Alzheimer’s afflicted loved ones. Designed to stimulate conversation and ensure all members a safe haven in posting personal feelings.”
Alzheimers and Dementia Caregivers Support
“We’re all in this together to create a welcoming environment. Let’s treat everyone with respect. Healthy debates are natural, but RESPECT is required.”
“Welcome to Caregivers Connect, a community created to bring a voice to family caregivers, and related care-industry professionals, who are caring for a parent, spouse, or loved one. We share personal experiences, advice, and stories with one another in order to provide support along each of our journeys.
Whether you are a caregiver, have been a caregiver, or know a caregiver, we hope that you can find some inspiration, and helpful resources along the way. Sponsored by GreatCall.”
Caring for Elderly Parents
“Our turn to parent: helping our elderly loved ones negotiate the world is the hardest job we’ve ever undertaken. As we learn to cope we share info, vent our frustrations, and share support.”
The Caregiver Space Community
“Are you providing care for someone who is elderly, ill, or disabled? Join our supportive community of spousal caregivers. This is a private space for all caregivers to connect. Both family and professional caregivers are welcome.”
The Caregiver Space also has a list of other Facebook groups they manage specifically for spouses, long-term care, parents etc.
Caregivers Assist Support Group
“CaregiversAssist Support Group is an online community of dedicated caregivers. The purpose of this group is to share best caregiving practices and learn how to live a healthy prosperous life as a caregiver. We vent, rant, share our ups and downs, tips, experience. This is a safe refuge for caregivers. This group was started by Certified Geriatric Care Manager, Aileen Ruess, who shares over 25 years of caregiving experience.”
Caring For The Caregiver Support Group
“This is a support group intended to be a private setting for all of us Caregivers to express our thoughts & feelings.”
“This is a space for women who are balancing caring for an aging parent with their career and the rest of their life. Join us for community, support, encouragement. Share your questions and your best advice.”
“How To Cope With Elderly Parents…This is a group where we can vent, give ideas on how to handle taking care of our elderly parents while also raising children”
Caregivers of Narcissistic Family Members
“This is a safe place to discuss the day to day care of a “narcissistic loved one”. A free place to vent and offer help and support of what we are going through.”
“The main goal for the Caregivers Hub Support Group is to create a safe space for the brand new Caregiver to learn and be supported by the veteran Caregiver. ALL Caregivers are welcome here. Family Caregivers and Professional Caregivers are encouraged to support and be supported by one another.”
“Caregiver Support Community is a welcoming, supportive community for family members taking care of family. When you join, we ask you to share your story with us so that we can make sure that this community is a good fit for you. We welcome people of any faith or of no faith. If this community is right for you, believe me, you will love it here.”
“Are you a care-partner for a loved one who has Alzheimer’s Disease and/or another form of dementia? You’re in the right place. My name is Julie Fleming. I’ve been my father’s primary caregiver for more than five years (he’s now in Stage 7 of Alzheimer’s, with a secondary diagnosis of vascular dementia) and it’s been the most exhausting, frightening, & loving experience I’ve ever had. I started this group to be a place to share what we’ve learned as care-partners, to vent and support one another, and to break the silence that leaves so many caregivers feeling alone.”