Whether you love this holiday or completely despise it, Valentine’s Day is this Saturday. If you’re a person who loves Valentine’s Day, this is a day to celebrate love and companionship. But when your Valentine is living with cancer and you’re acting as the caregiver, this day can take on a deeper and more complex meaning. Caring for a spouse can be extremely challenging. According to the National Quality of Life Survey for Caregivers, a caregiver spends an average of eight hours a day providing care and support to their loved one, and many caregivers feel just as much distress, if not more, than the patient does.
Whether it’s Valentine’s Day, or just a typical day, the Cancer Support Community is committed to providing support and resources to caregivers, so they can provide support to their partner.
The Cancer Experience Registry: Caregivers, is just the latest example of CSC’s commitment to understanding the impact cancer has on caregivers. This project is an expansion of CSC’s Cancer Experience Registry, which, since its launch, has collected over a million data points on more than 7,500 people who have had cancer. Similar to the patient Registry, the Cancer Experience Registry: Caregivers will ask caregivers a series of questions about their experience and will connect them to a network of support.
“For decades we have known that cancer impacts not just the people who are diagnosed, but those caring for and about them as well,” said Kim Thiboldeaux, CEO of the Cancer Support Community. “The registry for caregivers will help identify the unique challenges of this community and create better resources to address their needs.”
One recommendation CSC often makes to caregivers is to have their own support system in place—people who you can lean on for support, and who know just how you feel. This new Registry will be able to act as a support system for caregivers by allowing participants to compare their responses to survey items with other members of the Registry and be part of a community of caregivers.
“The Cancer Experience Registry: Caregivers is more than just a research project-it is also a community where people can listen to the stories of others and find professional and peer support when they need it,” said Joanne Buzaglo, Ph.D., Senior Vice President of Research & Training at the Cancer Support Community.
To join this exciting new initiative and make your challenges as a caregiver known click here, and click here for more information about the Cancer Experience Registry: Caregivers. Also, tune in to this week’s special episode of Frankly Speaking About Cancer to hear more about caring for your spouse on Valentine’s Day, and every day.