Long term care doesn’t only affect elderly people needing care, it can affect an entire generation. The sandwich generation is a term often used to describe adults “sandwiched” between raising their children and caring for aging parents with long term care needs.
Nearly 1 in 10 people over age 40 are sandwiched between generations and feeling the pressure, according to a long term care poll by The Associated Press – NORC Center for Public Affairs Research. Here’s a glimpse into how long term care responsibilities are really affecting the daily lives of those in the sandwich generation.
Half Are Caring for an Elderly Mother
Studies show 50% are caregivers to an elderly mother with 10% caring for an aging father. Care can range from taking them to the grocery store to feeding them, dressing them, and managing their medications.
They’re Trying to Balance Raising Children and Caring for Parents
How well can you juggle both responsibilities? Those in the sandwich generation must make difficult decisions between making it to their child’s baseball game or piano recital and caring for an aging parent. They feel pulled in two different directions between people who mean the world to them.
Self-Care Disappears from Their List of Priorities
When you’re focused on everyone else, who has time for personal self-care? The sandwich generation is stretched thin between family commitments, work, and being a full-time caregiver. When this happens, their health declines and the care they provide is affected.
They May Choose Between Their Career and Being a Caregiver
It’s difficult to manage a full-time job and oversee care for a parent. If families can’t afford the care a loved one deserves, many take it upon themselves. The sandwich generation feels pressure to miss work or quit their job and dedicate themselves to proper caregiving.
They May Pay for Care Out of Their Own Pocket
If their parents don’t have the income or assets to pay for care, many pay for their parent’s care on their own dime. The average monthly amount paid for family caregiving was $6,954 in 2016. Even if siblings share the cost, many families struggle to pay the monthly bill.
They Worry About Their Own Future Care Needs
The sandwich generation worries about their own future care needs, including the stress and pressure their children may face when caring for them. If long term care is expensive now, how much more expensive will it be 20 or 30 years later? As the sandwich generation experiences caregiving personally, they’re more likely to make a plan for their long term care needs.
Do these issues sound familiar to you? It’s never too late to create a long term care plan. Long Term Care insurance protects your income, assets, children, and grandchildren by providing the financial means to pay for your care. Start your long term care plan now.