A recent article in The Atlantic focused on what it called a crises facing the many women in the United States who have become the primary care givers for their aging parents.
The article pointed out that while many might see the headline as slightly sexist, the reality was that in over 80% of the cases, when an elderly parent needs care, it is a daughter who steps in to help. In many cases it’s almost expected.
According to the article, women lose an average of $324,000 in compensation due to care giving and can see their career damaged, derailed or even ended. Equating the care for elderly parents, the author notes that for new parents there are all sorts of books and support groups, but for elder caregivers the toll is both physical and emotional.
In the United States we are just beginning to find businesses who provide paid leave for parenting but there are few, if any, provisions for paid leave to take care of a sick parent.
Analysts quoted, point out that in many ways caring for an older parent is more time consuming and difficult than caring for an infant or a three-year-old.
By 2030 there will be a need for an estimated 6 million care givers to satisfy the needs of Baby Boomers who are turning 65 at the rate of 10,000 every day. Unfortunately, unlike finding day care for a child, many older Americans do not want a stranger in their home and will only allow children to attend to their needs especially when they become intensely personal.
Very soon, according to the article, employers will have to recognize the need and make changes to the benefits they give to their employees.
At , our team helps families deal with Elder Care needs everyday.