A carer is someone who looks after a family member, or a friend, with a physical or mental illness, a disability or addiction, because that person cannot look after themselves.
Every situation is different, the care may be required in the short or long term, but a carer is not paid and quite often devotes most of their time to caring for someone else, which has an impact on what they are free to do with their own life.
Being a carer can make you feel isolated from the rest of the world. But you are not alone. It is estimated that there are some 35,000 carers looking after people living in Sandwell.
The type of care that is required can vary from:
- Emotional support such as listening and offering advice and friendship or
- Practical support such as helping with dressing, shopping or managing money.
Whatever age you are and whether you are caring for a parent, child, partner or friend, it can help to access support for yourself and talk to others who understand what you are going through.