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The Working Caregiver: Issues Faced With Working & Caregiving

10 Comments

yes its hard to work full time and care for your parent with demenia /alzheimers i have one caregiver which works for 12 hours , me and fiance' work the other 12 hours plus work our current jobs , am looking into assisted living facility due to parent has fallen a second time and is in the hospital as i speak, with a surgery pending. its very emotionally draining on me as the only child for my parent to be going thru this with her and her not caring one bit not that she would, but also making the decision that now she needs other services that neither the caregiver or i can give her!

I have lost thousands of dollars in wages in the eight years I have been caring for family elders. Since bonuses are given annually and are a percentage of your gross pay, I have lost thousands in bonuses. I was not a paid caregiver the first five years.
My savings dwindled considerably because none of my depression era formed relatives would pay a cent for anything. Now I'm having trouble at work. Caregiving occasionally requires me to be off on a day I'm the lead person. The boss says he will cover, but then assigns someone else to do it. They file formal complaints saying it's ;not really an emergency. Sometimes it is an emergency. But sometimes it's simply not something I can change because providers are inflexible. The boss agrees until I remind him it's an arrangement he approved. It's just getting out of hand. My caregiving has gotten "old". No one wants to hear it or cares. I would quit, but I can't support myself without a job. I now draw a salary to care for my remaining elder. But it isn't enough to support me especially since I had to move her to memory care in an attempt to save my job. I'm so worn out. So tired of trying not to let caregiving interfere with work, so tired of being exhausted, so tired of needing a vacation and don't dare ask for time off because of all the emergency time off I've had and while I have not brought my personal issues to work or burdened co-workers with all the drama of caregiving, they don't understand and don't particularly want to understand. My boss does understand, and even recently back pedaled on a poor evaluation because he had agreed to cover a day that it turned out he couldn't cover and he asked the office manager to cover and she filed a formal complaint. He then wrote up the bad eval, and when reminded I had arranged the day off, he changed the eval.
But I don't see any solution. All the facilities, the doctors, everyone does things on their own time and the elders and I have to accommodate their schedule which means work loses. Period. That doesn't cover the falls and episodes of delirium the facility can't handle and want me to come, or the legal issues that require hours and hours of bookwork to keep straight. And that means I lose. I suppose I'll get fired if things go too wrong for too long, and I actually have to go down with the ship because I can't afford not to work, and I don't suppose any job is more flexible. I'jm alone in this and I guess I'm grateful they've put up with my inattention, exhaustion, and absenteeism. I've avoided professional development so I don't have to leave town and I've avoided networking because I just don't have the energy. In any and every way I can step beyond the expected performance, I do. I produce, I don't coast. And I am loyal and reliable. But I have to just drop everything and leave sometimes. I don't know if this is helpful. I have held on to my job because everything else in my life that was just mine is gone. My job, that I love was all I have been able to hang on to from my former life. It is the only thing that is just mine and I fought tooth and nail to keep it. But I think it's a losing battle, and then all of me will be gone and I'll just be living for someone else who's dying.

It's not enough!
I don't need 12 weeks of unpaid leave. I need a flexible environment where i can get my work done but have the ability to take someone to a doctors, or work from home when he can't care for himself.
Stuck in a quagmire, and not even able to find home care assistance so I can get a break.

If you want compensation, you have to sign up for Medicaid and then sign on with a home health agency.

I am a caregiver for my husband. Is it possible to get compensated for doing this. We are on a fixed income and could use the extra money.
- Joyce E, Florida

Incontinence supplies can be bought in bulk from websites such as Allegro Medicl,, they have discounts and free shipping frequently. If you sign up for email communication you are notified of these specials. Their delivery is quick and accurate. I use them all the time. Recommend buying a small amount at first until you find the right product for your loved one.

I am an unemployed grandmother who cares for her special needs grandson,I stay with my recently divorced son, my question is , am I eligible for any compensation? My son is a member of the military.

Does anyone in Jersey City, NJ know where I can purchase incontinence supplies such as diapers and chucks in bulk rather than buying it off from Walmart or at the grocery stores. Would greatly appreciate your feed back.

Although this is good information for some - I wonder if the author is a caregiver herself .....her bio at the end reads more like marketing that "street cred" ...
sorry to sound cynical but there you have it.

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Its a shame more people didnt take advantage of these services, most dont know they exist. Just like purchasing a medical alert system , most dont realize that some insurance companies will help off set the cost. I purchased responselink for my mother and her insurance reimburses the cost monthly. The cost is minimal already but every dollar counts.