What About Me?

"I was not prepared for how much my life would change when I became my Dad's care giver."

Caregivers and Care Managers are special people.   We are strong, dedicated and selfless individuals.  We accept this role and the price that comes along with it.   It has a way of changing things from our relationships with our spouse/life partner, our children, siblings and most of all -the one with yourself to our careers and even our own future retirement.

 

There is very little being said about the side affects of being a Caregiver and the scars it makes on us.   We are made to feel like there is something wrong with us and its all in our head - the stress, frustrations, the worry, the fear, the challenges and "battles" of just getting through each day when you are caring for someone.   We understand because we felt the same as you.

 

What you are feeling is real, valid and has a name:   Caregiver Stress Syndrome.    Here is where you can read more about this (Caregiver.com; The Caregiver Syndrome by Ron Ingber.)

"Caregiver stress syndrome is a condition characterized by physical, mental and emotional exhaustion. It typically results from a person neglecting their own physical and emotional health because they are focused on caring for an ill, injured or disabled loved one."

This is not a diagnosis!  Nor are we medical professionals.   Our goal is to share with you information that we have been looking for to define how we were feeling and ways to address many of the issues related with the Caregiver role. 

   

Yes, your life does matter. 

Defining Moments

"Thanks for the "girls night out" invite - sorry can't make it.  Its just not possible for me to go out unless I can find someone to cover caring for my Dad."

"I'm on the fast path for a promotion, but now Mom is moving in with me.   I'm not sure if I will be able care for her and work full-time."  

"The sister-in-law is setting up a spa day, but you cannot afford to go since you are paying some of Mom's bills out of your own pocket."

But wait, there is more...  

Its all very real - the concerns, the issues and impacts this all has on our lives as Caregivers. Until now, Caregivers were living in the shadows.  They were a scattered demographic because it was hard to keep track of individuals who finally find their way out of this.  Caregivers of someone who has passed away tend to bury their role with them.  

 

However, things are happening to change all of this.   Slowly, the issues we are facing as Caregivers are making its way into the mainstream.    Organizations are interested in addressing Caregivers in the now.   Thankfully, there are now statistics available to further quantify the impact this role has on individuals.  As more and information is collected about the various shapes of today's Caregivers; which now includes: millennials and men, the numbers will become more staggering.   

 

Here is what has been learned so far.      

Over half of female Caregivers agree with the following statements according to Julie Hyman Anchor; Yahoo Money :

"I'm afraid that caregiving expenses will keep me from ever retiring (83%)"

"Being a caregiver will likely use up the money that I had planned to leave for my children's inheritance (64%)"

Being a caregiver could use up the money I had planned to use for my children's education (57%)" 

Listen to the rest of this V-Log on the Study: Women bear the brunt of caring for aging parents; Yahoo Money -Julie HymanAnchor .  

Yahoo.com/money/women-bear-the-brunt-of-caring-for-aging-parents-nationwide-retirement-study

The Bucks County Area on Aging offers these statistics: 

 

"Care Managers/ Givers spend on average $5000 out of their own pocket when caring for another individual."

"60% of Care Managers/Care Givers die before the person they are caring for."

"50% of Care Managers/Care Givers end up in depression."

"There are more women leaving the workforce today to care for an elderly parent than women who are leaving it to have children.    Typically, women who leave the workforce to have children will eventually return to within several months.   However, women caring for an elderly parent may be out of the workforce for several years."

 

Unfortunately, we are unable to provide statics share regarding the emotional impacts but we know that it exists.  The Caregiver Syndrome is very real.    It has touched one of us.    Which one,  my sister or myself is irrelevant.   What is relevant is what you are feeling is valid.   Take control of the Caregiver role so that it does not take control over you.   Use the tools and resources we are making available.    For example, Home Care Agencies provide more than just patient care.    They are also there to support you.    Therefore, If you are going to be paying out of pocket expenses anyway, then invest in solutions that make your life a little better.    So when you are invited to a girls night out or would like to reconnect with your life partner or spouse on a weekend get-a-way, call in your Home Care Agency or take your parent to a place that offers short term respite care.       

Most asked questions:

Is it possible for me to maintain a full-time job and be my parent's caregiver?   

Can I get paid for being my parents' caregiver?

What about my personal relationship with my spouse or life partner? 

When is my downtime?  

Most asked questions:

Is it possible for me to maintain a full-time job and be my parent's caregiver? 

Validation brings peace of mind...

These are all very valid concerns and they should be addressed.   That is why we are encouraging you to take action now.  Every day is stressful with unexpected challenges.  No one will understand any of this, unless they've gone through it which my sister and I have.     We no longer felt a connection with our friends.    We felt so alone and unsupported in the process, but you don't have to!   This is our mission - to make support, information and solutions easier to find.    By becoming a member of our website, you will have access to our Action Plans and other resource pages. 

 

In our Home Coming Plan, we cover having the conversations with your employer about options of working while caring for your loved one.   Learn how it would be possible to get paid for being your parent's Caregiver with the help of an Estate Planning attorney.        

Resources are Right here - right now.

My sister and I are real.   The issues and challenges Caregivers face are real.   Finding real information to help you when you are facing these challenges should not be a challenge too.   That is what we are here doing for you.   Visit the Marketplace to find products and services to help you over come your challenges.    You are not alone.     We are right here - right now.     So are these professionals and support organizations to help you through this.  

"Make time for yourself a task item.   It does not make you a bad Caregiver - it makes you a stronger one when you do!"  

"You know, our home helpers are not just to help your Dad - they are there to support you too." Frank Esterlie, owner of Home Helpers Home Care Services. 

What is the Formula For Success?

Learn More!

Can I get paid to be my parent's  Caregiver?

Learn How!

Where can I find ways to help pay for my loved one's care?

Right Here!

Where can I learn more about "Elderhood Planning? 

Right Here!

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Our experiences are real.

Aging Parents Management, LLC

Doylestown, Pennsylvania

Tel. 267-343-9660

Email Us

Disclaimer:   The content on this website does not constitute legal advice.   A qualified attorney in your state should be consulted concerning any legal questions, issues or matters that you have.

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