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Dear Friends


10 New Year's Resolutions
for Family Caregivers

Week of January 1, 2019
Prayer Requests

Dear Friends,

Our work over the past 13 years with the Friends of St. John the Caregiver has shown us, time and time again, that family caregivers are constantly making sacrifices because to caregive is to love ... and to love is to make sacrifices for one's loved one.

That's why we're suggesting 10 New Year's resolutions that will help you be a better caregiver without making your life harder.

1. Don't beat yourself up because you aren't "perfect" at caregiving. (None of us is perfect at anything!)

2. Remember that, even if you can't take a big break, little breaks help, too. Even five or 10 minutes in the middle of a long day or seemingly endless night.

3. Tell your spouse and children you're not mad at them. It's just that "I’ve used up all my 'nice.'" Tell them what you want: alone time, a hug, chocolate....

4. Don't hesitate to ask for — or even demand — help.

5. Forgive yourself for the times you've lost your temper. (That can be harder than asking another for forgiveness! It's good to do that, too.)

6. Enjoy, relish!, the joyful moments with your care-receiver.

7. Admit that what you're doing is hard. It is.

8. Remember that your loved one's condition may become worse, that he or she may die, but it's not your fault.

9. Pray. (Yelling at... Speaking loudly to God can be a prayer that comes straight from the heart.)

10. Know that you're not alone, even though at times you feel lonely. God has asked you to do this and you've accepted his invitation. He's with you always. Right here. Right now.

You and your loved ones remain in my prayers.

(Yes, this is a repeat of a January 2017 "Dear Friends" letter but in the first paragraph I did change "the past 11 years" to "the past 13 years."  The rest seems perennial. A good and gentle reminder, and bit of encouragement.)

As always, you remain in my prayers.



The start of a new year is a good time to consider (or reconsider) a bit of respite time for yourself. No, that's not selfish. It's important for you and your care-receiver.

To quote our Topic/Flier on respite care:

No matter what the particular circumstances may be, the basic truth is the same: A primary caregiver needs to take breaks or soon will burn out, soon will be unable to take care of anyone, including himself or herself.

You can find the Topic here and printable Flier here. (Same material in different formats.)


Again this week we cordially invite you to join the Friends of St. John the Caregiver! (FSJC's programs include and You can find out more about becoming a member here.

No meetings, no dues. All we ask is that you pray for caregivers and those receiving care. Our members include caregivers, care-receivers, and those who support both (including quite a few former caregivers).

You can:

sign up on-line here

or call us toll-free at 1-800-392-JOHN (5646)

or print and mail an application form.

Past "Dear Friends" Letters

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