What to Do When Your Caregiver Ghosts You and Stops Showing Up
In the world of needing people to come to your house to help with basic cares, there’s a phenomenon that occurs that will shock anyone not familiar with this world, and that’s caregivers not showing up. It’s something that shocks even me, and it happens way more than it should.
Ask anyone who relies on caregivers morning and night. Chances are they’ve had at least one instance of a caregiver not showing up, and it’s probably happened more than once. But this is not an article to whine about the reality of human nature. This is a fact of life. There’s good people and bad people, good employees and bad employees, and you will eventually run into the bad ones at some point.
What matters is how you deal with these no call/no show situations. Firstly, you should always expect that it will happen at some point. Do not compare your caregivers to perfect angels that come to your home. They are humans and they will falter. Just recently I had a caregiver who completely ghosted me a day after communicating with me quite well about getting paid. The next morning she never came to her shift, and I haven’t heard from her since and we are still trying to get my key back. This happens people.
When you have to call your boyfriend to get out of bed because your caregiver doesn’t show, it’s easy to let your heart sink into places you didn’t know was possible. For too long I’ve been allowing these caregivers to affect me personally. But no more. We must put our emotions on the back burner when dealing with them. It’s one of the best tips I can give. But there’s more. The next time a caregiver doesn’t show, don’t fret. Instead, refer to my following tips to get yourself covered ASAP.
Verify They Aren’t Sick or On Their Way
Sometimes your caregiver is not blowing you off, but they’re actually sidelined because of an illness, family emergency, their phone is lost or their car not working. Before you jump to any conclusions, always verify that none of these things have occurred before you assume they’re not showing up ever again. If it’s been 24 hours and you still don’t hear anything, then you can probably put them in the ghosted category.
Call/Text Your Other Caregivers
When you hire new caregivers, always ask if they’re available for emergency fill-ins and make sure that you have at least one person that is great at filling in. This will ensure you are more likely to get covered when a caregiver doesn’t show up. So when you do have a caregiver not show up, you can text/call your caregivers for help and know that you’ll at least get a response. Also, make sure your caregivers are all aware that this may occur.
Call Your Home Healthcare Agency
If none of your caregivers on staff can help, you should always contact your home health care agency to see if they have anyone who can help. My old home healthcare agency had a great on-call emergency service that would usually send a human to the rescue. However, nowadays my new agency is not that great. Always try to find an agency with a reputation of finding decent caregivers in a pinch.
Last Chance – Call Family, S.O., Friends
If your home health care agency is unable to find anybody who can help, you’ll have to contact family, willing friends, or your significant other (if you have one) to see if anyone is available. This can be stressful but I’m sure many of you have had to do this before when there’s no one else around. Remember, if you are stuck in bed for too long, you can always call 911. Even consider putting a call out for help on your social media outlets.
Look for Red Flags to Avoid Future Occurrences
While sometimes even the most perfect caregiver will shock you and never show up again, most caregivers who never show up again do exhibit red flags that show they’re capable of such an action. Ask them about their financial history for example. If they have a history of not paying their bills on time, this is a red flag. If they’re consistently late and do not text, this is also a red flag. Any sign of disrespect towards you is a sign as well.
Remember, never take it personally when a caregiver stops coming. Be prepared, know what to do when it occurs, and it will be one of the most mundane things that happen to you all week (hopefully).
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Spinal Cord Team