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December 2018
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February 2019

As you watch your parents or other beloved elders age, sometimes worry becomes inevitable. Should they have housing upgrades? Can they continue to live independently? Your intention isn’t to take over their lives, but you may genuinely want to start the conversation about possible future changes. How do you do this without causing a backlash? Read more →


...It's not hard to understand why 60-year-olds would say that they want to remain in their home for life rather than move to assisted living or a nursing home. These are generally people who are relatively healthy and feel that they can hire help for whatever they need down the road. Indeed, aging in place sounds like a wonderful concept. What could possibly be wrong with it? Read more →


Reasons for hospital stays can range from happy occasions, such as the birth of a child, to planned surgeries or treatments, such as an elder having a hip replacement, to even more frightening emergency medical situations. While any of these reasons can create stress, emergency situations are likely the most difficult for both the patient and their family. Read on for tips on how you can help someone get through this difficult time. Read more →


Dear Carol: My dad, 84, can shower, dress, and eat. He’s continent and takes no medications, he can read, his hearing is OK, he’s non-combative. What he can’t do is stay safe. My presence is needed 24/7 because he is living in an altered state of reality. I read about caregiver burnout, but these people seem to do so much more than I do that I feel guilty complaining. Even so, I know that I need help. When I sleep, my back burner is always on waiting for him to wake me because of an imaginary intruder or because he forgot something. I'm always worried that he could be wandering through the house and I wouldn’t know it. Should I hire someone to be in the house overnight so my sleep can be solid?? Am I being too much of a pansy? I feel the comfort of knowing someone else is available while I sleep may help me endure this marathon. – HB Read more →


Every person who becomes a caregiver will have unique personality traits, yet we nearly always share certain feelings and experiences as we travel a road similar to one another. That's one reason that caregivers often turn to other caregivers for support. It's a version of the adage that we need to walk in another's shoes in order to truly understand what they feel. Read more →


It's something many of us have done. Our parents are in their middle years and have come home from visiting someone in a nursing home. The hospital-like structure of the older nursing home was disturbing to them. While relating their experience to you they say that they'd hate to end up in a place like that. You jump in and say with feeling and genuine belief, "I'd never put you in a nursing home" Read more →


As a family caregiver of multiple elders, I needed a facility where more than one of my elders could live while I cared for others in various locations. My family was fortunate to find an excellent nursing home just a few blocks from my home. During the 15 years that my loved ones (different people at different times) lived in this facility, I learned a great deal about what makes a good nursing home tick. I interviewed a licensed nursing home administrator for her tips on selecting a nursing home not long ago, but as a family member, I’d like to add a few more ideas. Read more →


Family caregiving is more of an art than a science. Most people who take on the challenge of family caregiving do the best that they can under their unique circumstances, yet, they often receive criticism, sadly even from other caregivers. How can family caregivers who are already doing so much for their loved one(s) weather criticism from outsiders about how they provide care? Read more →


Goggled, hobbled, isolated by headphones, I am guided forward. We finally reached the top step. The woman holding my elbow didn't have much to say. I was hungry for the sound of an unfiltered human voice, but I had to concentrate so hard on climbing the steps, as my sight was distorted by the goggles, that I probably wouldn't have heard much, anyway. Besides, these headphones were isolating. Read more →