The Attendant Caregiver Relationship

Rear view of a Hoyer lift, used for lifting pa...

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This post comes from a twitter follower who to paraphrase his question wants to know how I manage life with personal care attendants. I am now in a time of transition so consider this an introduction to a series that will take place over the next few months.

I will for now comment on life with them up until this point Let me clarify personal care attendants are to me defined as paid support staff

The Teen Years

The look of the attendant for me has changed over the years. I started having attendants when I was 13. The job that the girls I had as young teen was simply to get me out in to the community doing “normal” teenaged activities like going to the movie or mall etc things that one as a teen wouldnt always want to be doing with mom and dad at their side.

The Young Adult Years

When I turned 18 that changed it was now more a focus on personal care dressing bathing etc things that would make it possible for me to live on my own. More to come on this topic in coming weeks or months.

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About lifeofthedifferentlyabled

Laura Forde founded her blog through my eyes: my life with cerebral palsy in December 2009 out of a great need she had, realizing that there was a vast gap in firsthand accounts of what life was like living with Cerebral Palsy: she knew then that the only way to see this reflected online was to create the change herself and thus this blog was born Laura was born four months premature, weighing a mere one pound three ounces and given ten percent odds for survival. She was diagnosed with cerebral palsy at the age of three. After graduating from college, she continued writing and doing what she loves to do most; speaking to groups about her life experiences and sharing what she has learned from her journey. Her blog lifeofthedifferentlyabled was created after discovering that the online community lacked the voice of people in her situation. In its first year, the site saw over 20,000 hits from all over the world. Her readers are from all walks of life; some with disabilities, parents of children, professionals, and others who seek to gain a better understanding of the world of the differently abled. You can follow her on Twitter or Facebook
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4 Responses to The Attendant Caregiver Relationship

  1. Sarah Tonen says:

    A few questions for your future posts on this topic:

    How many hours per day does your attendant typically work? Do you have a staffer every day, or just some days? What tasks do they do for you–do they do housekeeping and cooking as well, or do you have a separate person for those duties? Do you have different attendants, or do you have the same one, and do you develop a relationship of sorts /friendship with them, or do you maintain strict employer-employee boundaries? Have you ever had issues with an attendant and how did you resolve that? Do you have to pay for them out of pocket or does insurance cover them?

  2. Jo says:

    Call me clueless, but it never occurred to me to hire an aid to get Monkey out in the community to do “normal” teen things. I mean, we’re still quite a few years away from the teen years and it’s too soon to tell whether or not Monkey will need an aid, but it’s something I’ll have to chew on. Hiring a young person instead of a totally uncool parent or other adult is a great idea. =)

    • lifeofthedifferentlyabled says:

      The one who was with me from 13 to 16 is still in contact with me regularly she lives on the west coast and I haven’t seen her physically in over ten years but skype is a wonderful thing shes one of my closest friends

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