Caring for family members, whether they are elderly or have disabilities, can be emotionally and physically draining. Your own physical space away from family can provide a respite from these responsibilities, allowing caregivers to focus on their own needs and well-being.
A parent with an adult child who has a disability faces a difficult decision between wanting to support their child's independence and ensuring their safety and well-being. Of course as a parent you do not want the adult child to be too far from home, but also recognise the importance of allowing them to live a fulfilling life.
Having ones own physical space is essential for maintaining good mental health. Caring for any family member with disabilities can be a full-time job, and it can take a significant toll on a parent's mental health. Adults need more privacy and independence, and having separate living spaces can allow them to have that while still being close. This can help them maintain a sense of autonomy and control over their own lives, which is important for their mental well-being.
Our Care Customer Ambassador, Shayoni Shah, tells us “with the cost of long term care objectionable to many families, what we are seeing is existing homes be adapted to accommodate the family situation. A Granny Flat can allow your family to find a balance between being a supportive parent and allowing your child to live life on their own terms. What we see is parents able to work hard in the background to create accessible spaces that accommodate individual needs, and the end result is less worry about the childs’ safety and wellbeing.”
Having enough space can also help the parent maintain their own sense of identity and independence. It can be easy to lose oneself in the role of a full-time caregiver, but having space to pursue hobbies, interests, and other activities outside of caregiving can help maintain a sense of self. This, in turn, can help prevent burnout and promote better mental health for the parent.
In addition to providing space for separate living areas and individual pursuits, having enough space can also help reduce stress levels for both the parent and the adult child with disabilities. When living in close quarters, it can be easy for tensions to run high and for minor annoyances to become major sources of stress. Having enough space can help reduce these tensions and allow for a more peaceful living environment.
Shayoni says, “A separate living area will give the carer the much-needed space and time away from this often 24 hour job. They can spend time in their own home, pursuing their own interests, and taking care of themselves. It’s a balance.”
A granny flat can be designed to be accessible and accommodating to the needs of its occupant, including a wide array of specifications that are personal to them
Finally, having enough space can provide opportunities for socialization and community involvement. For the adult child with disabilities, having space for friends and visitors can help them build and maintain social connections. For the parent, having enough space to host events or gatherings can provide opportunities for socialization and community involvement, which can be beneficial for mental health."
Overall, space away from family can be beneficial for mental health in many ways. It can provide opportunities for personal growth and development, promote independence and control, reduce stress and tension in relationships, and provide a break from caregiving responsibilities. While family is important, it's also important to recognize the value of space and independence for maintaining good mental health.
At Cubitt's, we focus on promoting choice for our clients. To achieve this, we deliver our service in collaborative and flexible way. If you are considering a Granny Flat as an option for your family, you are welcome to take your time browsing in our showrooms - bring in as many family members as you like, and see how comfy and spacious they can be - and of course talk to our team about how they can be customised to what you need.
This article was written by our Care Customer Specialist, Shayoni Shah. As our dedicated ambassador to those needing to understand what customisations and adaptations are required on a individual level, Shay has gone the extra mile to receive specialised training in providing exceptional support for customers who require extra care in their Granny Flat builds. Her expertise in accessible design and customer service will ensure a seamless and stress-free building experience for all client. If you'd like to speak to Shay when you call - simply ask for her, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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