How can I take care of myself while my sibling is struggling?

Being a support person is not easy. Remember the conflict that we talked about earlier? It takes a lot of energy in your “emotional tank” and sometimes anyone can run low. So, it is very important that you run on as full a tank as possible. How do you do that?  

Here are a few tips to help you:

1. Remember that you are not a caregiver. You are not responsible for your sibling that has anxiety/OCD. You can help, but at times you will need to follow the guidance of caregivers and pull back.

2. You can set boundaries or limits with the sufferer about how and when you will be able to help them.

3. You can get plenty of rest, exercise, and healthy food to refill your tank.

4. You can follow a schedule that helps YOU stay on track and not get overwhelmed.

5. Your sibling with anxiety/OCD is not the only kid with problems. You, too, can have your own challenges. You can talk to your caregiver(s) or a counselor who can provide help.

6. You can join a support group for siblings. Here, you can find a safe place for help, understanding, and making new friends.

7. Finally, you can do one of the most important things, HAVE FUN! This often fills your “emotional tank” the fastest way! Sports, hobbies, and friends are out there to provide lots of enjoyment. Load up on these!