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Building effective family relationships as a carer

Illustration of a family

As carers we can have some of the most complex, beautiful, heartbreaking, heartwarming, frustrating, rewarding, infuriating and soul affirming experiences with our families.

We can have some very unique, beautiful and close relationships with our cared-for person and our wider family. A closeness, understanding and depth of relationship with our cared-for, that others just wouldn’t


We can equally experience the polar opposite. Relationships can be complicated and exist within a pressure cooker. Meaning that complications, niggles or difficulties can easily be magnified. We can see the breakdown of extended family relationships, as different members ‘step up’ or ‘step away’, or disagreements over care arise. And the inability to ‘take a break’ or ‘step away’ adds extra stress.

Add to that, a pandemic with isolation and no outside support, and we can see some incredibly challenging relationships and situations.

“Families get complicated” - Sid, Ice Age

And so we wanted to let you know that however we’re feeling, we’re not on our own. We often see the most precious family moments with our cared-for and the most frustrating, shared by carers in the Mobilise community.

What we do see is that everything changes. Sometimes not as fast as we would like. But, things do change. Yesterday’s frustrations may turn into ‘a funny story’ or get replaced by a tender moment the next day.

Holding onto this knowledge can help get us through those tougher moments.

Support for family relationships

Ultimately, if we're fortunate enough to have a family, and one we can get along with, then it can be valuable to know how to manage that relationship to everyone's benefit.

To support us in our family relationships - whatever they may look like - we have pulled together our library of family and relationship support:

It's easy to think we're not doing enough. But what if we're doing as much as we can? How can we overcome the carer's guilt? feeling that we’re never doing enough.

Some of us may be looking after a family member or friend who lives quite a distance from us. And the lack of control of not being around can make us a little more anxious. Take a look at some of the ways carers have been finding ways to help with this, including some clever technology that has kept them feeling closer.

The waves of emotion we experience in our relationships with the person we care for is definitely unpredictable. There are many things we can grief, such as our hopes and dreams for the future, our 'old' self, and the relationship we 'used' to have.

Helpful tips and pointers to build a supportive family team around our caring role.

Tips from Kyro, our Co-Founder to manage our relationship and support ourselves. Kyro has been a carer to his Mum since he was a child.

Advice from Suzanne (our Co-Founder) and our community on how to get started with our support network - which may include family members.

Carers in the Mobilise share their wisdom on managing relationships.

If we feel like we’re being judged by family members, then this blog may help us to understand a bit more about judgement and how we can help ourselves to feel better.

Simply stuck in a rut? This uplifting blog has plenty of suggestions to get the conversation going again.


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