Good PCAs

Choosing good (and bad) PCAs

Human beings are one of the most mysterious species on the planet. Trying to guess what we’re thinking or trying to gauge if we are good or bad isn’t always necessarily easy. This never really bugged me that much until I needed PCAs.

When you’re in a vulnerable position, being able to read people is paramount. But how are we supposed to read people when it’s almost impossible?

People usually have to learn the hard way if the person they’ve hired, or have allowed to come into their home, is genuinely good or…not good. When I found myself in a wheelchair, I naively assumed anyone in the medical and care giving worlds was there because they genuinely cared.

You’d like to think this. It puts your mind at ease if you’re in the receiving-care position. But, since it can be a relatively easy job, sometimes the wrong people get into the profession. You don’t need me to bring up nursing home thefts to prove my point.

I find my PCAs online. Some say that’s my problem. I don’t think I find anyone better or worse people in this venue. Before I found my caregivers online, I’d go through my agency, and they’d find me PCAs the old school way – putting an ad in the paper. And over the years, I’ve had both good and bad eggs. Really great people who I can tell like me. They bring me cookies and check in on me when I’m ill. And really bad ones who steal lotions and over bill. Every time I run across a bad one, it’s incredibly disheartening.

I know I sound like a negative ninny, but the reality is that a lot of PCAs can be good at pretending they care, but they aren’t the bright and shiny person they seemed to be for several months. The best advice I can give you – always keep up your guard with caregivers. Realizing the person taking care of you isn’t who you thought they were can be one of the worst feelings. And it happens quite a lot.

But as some quads I’ve talked to say, maybe it doesn’t matter? Maybe I’m getting my feelings too invested in my caregivers? I know some quads who barely speak to their people when they come. Perhaps it’s time to change my strategy.

What is your opinion on this tough issue? Do you keep everything sans emotion to prevent yourself from getting hurt, or do you allow yourself to become friends with your PCA’s?

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