Caregiving vs. Curegiving

In a culture that values “curegiving” over “caregiving,” parents may feel it is their responsibility to “Google” their child’s condition whenever they have a spare moment. This results-oriented attitude may help us to check off items on a to-do list, but it can hinder effective coping when caring for a chronically ill child.

Kenneth Haugk, a pastor and clinical psychologist and founder of Stephen Ministry, has found in his experience that the focus of caregiving needs to be on the process instead of the result (Haugk, 1984). Pastor Haugk advises that caregivers should celebrate results, but not be held captive by them. He believes that results belong to God.

When parents are too focused on a particular result and/or milestone (especially when their child doesn’t meet them), their chronic sorrow can once again be triggered.