CARIE created an online resource for caregivers of older adults, CaregiverGPS – The Elder’s Advocate. One of the most difficult challenges for caregivers is addressing their loved one’s changing needs for care. CaregiverGPS – The Elder’s Advocate help caregivers think about options and make decisions along with those needing care. Topics include:
- I am worried about my loved one living on his/her own.
- I want to explore options when living at home no longer seems the best choice for my loved one.
- I am considering whether I should live with my loved one in order to provide in-home care.
- I believe my loved one needs someone to make decisions for her/him.
- I am concerned about whether I will be able to care for my loved one as he or she approaches the end of life.
- How can I manage being a long distance caregiver?
For the first time in US history, women can expect to spend more years caring for an aging parent than for a dependent child. Contrary to popular notions of older adults residing in nursing homes, national data reveals that the American family provides 80% of caregiving (transportation, housekeeping, personal care, shopping, cooking, paperwork, etc.) for ill or frail loved ones. Referred to as the “Sandwich Generation”, some caregivers are caring for both children and parents simultaneously.
It’s no wonder that caregiving can be emotionally overwhelming. Whether one becomes a caregiver gradually or suddenly, relationships inevitably change and can be difficult. Many questions may come to mind. Are the finances going to last? Am I doing enough? Can I handle the demands of caregiving? Many caregivers face problems alone and experience a complicated mixture of emotions. Grief, loneliness, frustration, anger, guilt, anxiety and depression intertwine with love, pride, commitment, and strength. Don’t forget to take care of yourself! Use our new guide to help: Taking Care of Yourself