A partner, family member or loved one has MS. Now what? The bills still need to get paid, the meals made, the kids driven to school, the homework done, the lawn mowed. And you have additional responsibilities and a lot of unknowns ahead of you. Here are some sites that can give you additional guidance and help.
Caregiver Organizations, Information, Advocacy, and Support
The MS Society has a Family Matters section dedicated to those who love and care for the person diagnosed with MS. This affects everyone, not just the person with the disease. It is important for the entire support system to have resources available to answer their questions, concerns and fears in a confidential setting.
CAN is the nation’s leading family caregiver organization working to improve the quality of life for the more than 90 million Americans who care for loved ones with chronic conditions, disabilities, disease, or the frailties of old age. CAN serves a broad spectrum of family caregivers ranging from the parents of children with special needs, to the families and friends of wounded soldiers; from a young couple dealing with a diagnosis of MS, to adult children caring for parents with Alzheimer’s disease. CAN (formerly the National Family Caregivers Association) is a non-profit organization providing education, peer support, and resources to family caregivers across the country free of charge.
Although not an organization that helps family caregivers directly, the National Alliance for Caregiving partners with other caregiving associations and groups to provide additional resources to help family caregivers address and cope with the challenges of caring for a loved one.
RCI provides educational programs for caregivers, conducts research, and disseminates information about caregiving.
A federal Web site designed to help people stay healthy. Healthfinder.gov features links to more than 6,000 government and nonprofit health information resources on hundreds of health topics including personalized health tools such as health calculators, activity and menu planners, recipes, and online checkups. In addition, the site offers tips for caregivers and health news. Information is provided in English and Spanish.
Well Spouse is a national membership organization that gives support to husbands, wives, and partners of the chronically ill and/or disabled. Well Spouse has a network of support groups and a newsletter for spouses.