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Although “to give” and “to take” describe opposite actions, caregiver and caretaker both mean “a person who provides care and attention. In the dictionary explanations, caretaker usually is described as someone employed to look after goods, property, persons or animals. 

Caregiver refers to a family member, friend or a professional who provides care and support for a child or a dependent adult.

However, as the language specializes and gives other meanings depending on the context, we can notice a differentiation in these two terms when used to describe caring for another person in need.

Caregiving comes from love and forms the basis of healthy adult relationships. Yet there is another element that develops from caregiving, and that is caretaking. The latter causes co-dependency, and it is a far cry from extending love and care to another person.