Travelling, holidays and respite
On this page you can read about peoples’ experiences with travelling, their holidays, and finding respite care so they could take a break. Several caregivers were able to travel with their care recipient whereas others had stopped travelling together because travelling was too difficult.
While many caregivers were unable to arrange holidays for themselves, there were several who did manage. Others found respite care and took a much-needed break. To do this, the caregivers had to make (sometimes complicated) arrangements for the care recipient to stay home or go to a respite facility while they were away.
Marc and the friend he cares for love to travel. Travelling helps them get through more difficult moments.
Well, we like travelling abroad. We travelled a lot. And we have two trips coming up, one which is for a conference. We are involved at the international level with the mute. [My friend] is part of an international association and we participated in several conferences in Spain, Switzerland, and […]
Although Marie can no longer get health insurance, she and Joseph still take trips together. They think it is worth the risk
We are perfectly aware that, for example, we are going to Germany in the fall. Well, we are perfectly aware, I am not insurable. So, we know that maybe I will go, maybe I won’t, we don’t know. But we’ve accepted that, we’ve come to terms with that, even if we… We don’t want to keep ourselves from living in case something more serious happens to me. We agreed to make some concessions. to say, “Well okay, we will lose money”. We will lose money, that’s all. To date, it hasn’t happened. But it’s hard for me to travel because it’s tiring, you know. It takes me two days to get over it. But after that, I have to give myself a little rest period at the house or at the hotel where we are, and then after that, our itinerary each day. What we are going to visit and all that. We have to prepare ourselves.
Even though it was hard to travel with a disability, Shayna and her husband traveled with the family to maintain some normalcy.
Although Richard and his wife had to make many arrangements in order to travel, they still went on trips.
By that time she was not able to eat any solids. She was only able to eat liquids, and they put her on something called TPN—total parenteral nutrition—and it’s a very expensive therapy. And fortunately, we lived in Canada and it was covered by Medicare—although it’s not true in every […]
Challenges with travelling together
For many other caregivers, travelling eventually became too difficult. As Elaine said, at a certain point it becomes easier to stay at home. Lorna and her husband stopped travelling when they were unable to get insurance for her husband. For David’s wife, it became too difficult to travel because she couldn’t sit for long periods of time. Lillian and Michael’s son dislikes travelling, about which Michael commented, “I think learning to unlearn those things (family holidays) is a difficult thing. If you’re a family and you’re going on a family holiday and you’re not taking part of your family, what kind of family is that? Not taking him on a holiday is actually a demonstration of our love for him, not some sort of rejection, even though that sounds on the surface of it’s crazy and counter intuitive.”
Airplanes are not adequately accessible, so Claire and her husband stopped using air travel.
Not much beautiful about getting on an airplane besides being able to get somewhere. But airplanes are not accessible and boy I wish they would be. Buses could be, but for some reason, we’re told airplanes “can’t make it happen”. So if you use a power wheelchair and you can’t […]
Travelling alone or respite
Several caregivers were travelling alone for holidays or business trips. Some care recipients could stay home alone and only needed someone to check up on them, whereas others needed 24/7 care.
When Rowdyneko leaves for a cruise, her family tries not to disturb her.
I try and plan to go on a cruise every year, just because I have to. I have to get away. But even that’s hard. I mean I don’t even know. It’ll, that’ll be easier if he’s in long-term care because I will know he’s cared for. The past few […]
Lillian and Michael have developed a system to make sure their son has 24/7 care while they are away.
Well, so one of the things that we do is—we have many smaller and then bigger things, but we certainly—we have a holiday every year. So we’ve now started, this is the 4th year we’ve taken a winter holiday, just one week, and it’s when our son’s at school. So […]
For Joanne, sending her mother to a respite program isn’t an option; her mother would not be able to cope.
In our situation it, things as much as possible need to be in home. There are respite, there is a possibility of respite, but it would mean she’d go into an establishment for ‘x’ period of time. I would like that, but I know that this would kill her. I […]
Sometimes, it is not easy to leave the care recipient behind. Christiane had a respite weekend and her husband stayed in a facility. She said, “I had a break from September 30 to October 2nd, but they sent him to a long term care facility. But there, the TV is not working. He doesn’t see outside. I said: “Well, what will he do?” This is all he does during the day! There, you will not hear him, he will fall asleep. He just woke up, but he will fall asleep on the couch while watching TV. I picked him up on Sunday morning right after lunch.”
Other caregivers leave for a short time and don’t go far. Several caregivers described traveling with their cell phone ready, prepared to return home at a moment’s notice. On the other hand, Fernanda enjoyed hiking above the tree line knowing she could not be reached. Still, she would check-in with her mother every night.
When Fernanda is hiking in the mountains, there is no cell reception. Although she feels guilty, being unavailable is a relief.
So my escapes are my holidays and I’ll go hiking. And when I go hiking, I try to go up 8,000 feet above tree line where I can stand on top of a mountain, and just that’s when nothing matters. That is when, I don’t know if it is because […]
Review date: 2019-09