Among the many things we take for granted in our lives, including a general state of health, are our relationships and our ability to negotiate them, drop some, create new ones. Tell us your perceptions of the situation, what should and can be done – this is a point to think about as critical as any other related to care and caregiving.

For caregivers and for the differently-abled, for those receiving care and living their lives assisted by someone to varying degrees, relationships become a pressure point.

It took me a few years to understand
or pay attention
to the stress of care-giving that my wife was going through;
others (other family members, neighbours)
did not understand the nature of the disease,
hence were critical of the care-giving.
They often blamed the patient of “lack of will power”
and my wife of inadequate/ improper care.

(Rajesh Naik, supporting caregiver)

All relationships feel the stress. All the various kinds of relationships become bigger challenges than we generally know them to be. Caregiver parents worry about the children they look after as the years pass and everyone grows older. Siblings – deal with the receiving of care or caregiving – over and above sibling issues. Marriage, partnership, love relationships, friendships – all these bonds, generally looked at as support systems, become giant issues but in the background of daily life concerns.

A very interesting site some of you may want to check out is called Inclusive Planet – and you can jump to it here. Inclusive planet provides a platform for social networking that can be accessed by those who are visually or print impaired. According to the website, it was designed specially for the blind, started in October 2009 and currently has 4000 users from 78 countries and 2000 of them are from India.

A service resource we recently came across, is an initiative by Bharat Matrimony. It’s called Ability Matrimony and you can visit their website to get more information. We have not tried registering or logging in and are looking for user reviews and feedback on this service. Some people have already given us some feedback, expressing discomfort with the system of presenting /seeking matrimonial criteria and we’d like to state here that our mention of the website is not an endorsement of the systems and processes of the site, the organisation, or of users. We leave it up to you to decide your level of comfort or discomfort with the service and its methods of operation.

Here’s an interesting byte on sibling relationships and caregiving that we stumbled upon while net surfing. It’s a quick read and may be a familiar situation and context for many.

Up ahead, we’re wondering if creating relationship groups such as caregiver parents, children, siblings and spouses would lead to the creation of some new attitudes to caregivers and caregiving… and the people receiving their assistance.  Tell us how you respond to this.