How a circle can help spread the burden

How a circle can help spread the burden

This is especially true for those who live with or support someone with disabilities. It can make a big difference in the quality of your life by creating a support network so that you have the right people at your side.

It takes effort to build a trusted support group and keep those relationships going. Everyone has a busy life and people come and go. It’s all worth it.

We will be discussing strategies that can help you create a support network. It will give you peace of mind knowing that if you have any questions, we are only a text or phone call away.

What is a circle?

A circle of support is an association of people who share the same goal of contributing to another person’s well-being. They may meet regularly or communicate via a WhatsApp group, or other communication channels. They might be available for assistance when they are needed.

A circle of support is not only there to assist someone with a disability but can also be reassuring for primary caregivers. They know they have trusted people to bounce ideas off and help them with new concerns or issues. Who can you support in a circle?
It could be:

  • A person with a disability.
  • They are surrounded by their family and friends.
  • If needed, health professionals, support workers, and schoolteachers may be called upon.

People in similar situations can set up parent circles and online groups that offer support and comfort.

What does it do?

A circle of support helps to distribute the burden and take some of the responsibility off of the primary caregiver. It can be easier to have a mix of professionals, family members, and friends in your circle. As you make decisions and source information, you will have support to ensure that you are meeting the needs of the person you are supporting.

Some topics that might be discussed in a support group include:

  • What does the person with a disability desire or need in life
  • What is the most important thing they can do to make their lives better?
  • Who could do more to help them reach their goals?

Joe, for example, is a teenager who has an intellectual disability. Joe wants to be more independent and has a desire to find a job. Beth, Joe’s mother worries about Joe’s ability to cope at work and doesn’t know where she can start.

Beth turns to her support network for guidance. Joe’s teacher knows of a local disability employment agency and arranges for Joe to meet with them. Joe and Beth are invited by the teacher to attend the meeting.

Joe takes a part-time position at a nearby cafe. Joe is picked up by a friend who lives nearby. Joe’s doctor is in the circle and will talk to the employer to discuss his needs. Joe has been working for a few months.

All of this helps Beth greatly. It also relieves Beth of the responsibility of ensuring Joe gets a job.

Create your circle

You might be surprised at how much your life could be improved if you have a group of people to help you.

You are looking to establish a support network for someone with a disability if you have a loved one. People with the right skills and abilities to support someone with a disability should be invited. These people will help you build support skills and establish a relationship with the person with a disability.

As the person with a disability goes through life, a circle of support will naturally grow. It’s okay to invite others to your circle. They may have new skills and perspectives.

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