Question: Is there a web site that I can chat back and forth with people who are caregivers? I would find it helpful to discuss my problems with others and they can discuss problems with me.
Dr. Amy: The beauty of chat rooms is that you can connect with people without leaving your home. Many chat rooms are organized around particular conditions or diseases. For example, the Alzheimer’s Association offers chat rooms for people with Alzheimer’s Disease, and the American Cancer Society provides chat rooms for people with cancer. Many are open to both people with the disease as well as caregivers. I encourage you to visit the websites of the organizations that support the disease or condition of the person you are caring for.
Type, “Chat room” in the search field when you are the main page, and you will be directed to the chat rooms if they have them. You will be asked to register before you join. In addition to chat rooms, many organizations operate message boards—sometimes called forums, which can also be a great source of support. The National Family Caregivers Association (thefamilycaregiver.org) and Caring.com (caring.com) are examples. A number of organizations are planning to create or expand the online support they provide in the coming months. As with everything, you always want to make sure that you are dealing with reputable organizations. You also want to avoid giving out information that identifies you personally. I am interested in readers’ experiences with caregiving chat rooms and forums. I’d like to invite readers to share their experiences using the comment section.
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