"I'm scared of only one thing: Fear itself. And spiders."_Phill JupitusAs a caretaker, you must be careful of the messages you give off in your quest to help your loved one. The conscious messages are simpler. But it's a sad fact that love and fears for safety can accidentally put your loved one (I don't want to keep using "loved one"; it feels very impersonal, but not nearly as impersonal as "The patient".)
in a bubble.
Some people are easily changed, very sensitive.
Some thrive on being a little terrified, such as when you were a child watching the Wizard of Oz.
From flying monkeys to the Wicked Witch of the West, it's both an absolute delight and scary. That scary was part of the fun.
Nothing upsets me more than when something I'm sensitive about is harped on.
"That cop was watching you, behave" is a nasty, evil threat, even if your motivation is not nasty or evil. And, behaving can be a liability. If the "bad behavior" is a medical problem, I urge you to rethink your position on acceptable behavior.
No, it isn't fun to lose track of things, to take a nice meandering stroll because the car is usually right there! To have people harping on that wandering, or standing in a public restroom in a daze with your pants half zipped is a weird thing to do and could have potential, dangerous legal consequences. Which is NOT, NOT, NOT, NOT, I reiterate... NOT... their fault. If they are incapable of controlling themselves, have injured themselves, you as a care giver are supposed to do something. Say it with me: "I am an advocate. I am here to help my friend/ family member. If they cannot speak, I must."
As for "They were staring!" 9/10 of the time, "Hey, did your parents teach you manners?!" can suffice. If someone is doing more than staring and adding to fear, "What are you looking at?" can be used. NOTE: I don't normally advocate being rude.
If you cannot get over your own prejudices, then you must make way for more appropriate caregivers.
Please go over action plans, codes, safety procedures. Understand that both of you will occasionally frustrate the other. But... you are there to make life that much easier to live. To thrive. To heal. You are not there to moralize.
In my humble opinion, the scariest phrase by far "Isn't that too difficult?"
Please: patients- its ok to say, "Screw you! YES, I can!"