Is caring for children and family "caregiving" too? I am seeing the idea of caring for kids and family as "caregiving" quite a lot. Since when did rearing healthy children now become "caregiving"? As a caregiver to 3 elderly people with real special needs (Alzheimer's, diabetes, etc) I am kind of taken back by the idea that normal child rearing is now caregiving too. It kind of delutes the whole caregiving cause as normal family life? Those using "caregiver" are referring to guardians, maybe aunts and grandmas. Typically, caregiving is about someone who is sick ... and is a difficult thing for those that do step up to help. I hope we can find another term for those that care for healthy kids that will grow up, and move on to be adults and no long need the care. Such as "guardian" There is a difference. Those that are caregivers only have the death of those they care for to look into the future to. I realize this is this is nit picky nomenclature... but as what I think of as a "caregiver" it would be bad to lose that distinction into caring for healthy children and family too.

Cttn55, you say that the view point, it takes a village has filtered to parenting...I think it does take a village to raise kids, but Americans stopped being neighbors generations ago. So that shoots that view point.

I understand that to mean that if I see a child doing something inappropriate, I as a village member tell them to knock it off or their parents will hear about it, or if I see a little guy with boogers running down their face, I give them a tissue or send them home to deal with it, not providing the moral, ethical, financial backbone to these youngsters, more reinforcing what they have been taught. Unfortunately, those beliefs are all over the board now, so who knows what is acceptable. My oh my, I mean who teaches their kids that you don't have to be respectful to authority figures and DO as they ask/tell, but we see it everyday on the news about excessive force used, when it is really a problem of kids thinking they are above listening to authority. We never hear the media say, jr. Got his butt kicked because he spit at a policeman. Used to be the police could reprimand you and then you got whipped when you got home, now you get 15 minutes of fame.

Am I the only one that finds this reprehensible?

Thanks for all your thoughts so far. I got in quite an argument with a friend online last night. She cited Webster's who includes children in their definition of "caregiving" .... think we need a new term!

You go ahead and pick those nits! You've certainly raised a smile of recognition with me - of this and other, related battles over what we call things and what they mean and who they include and whom they might conceivably omit who would feel slighted by the omission.

Groan. "Yes, you're a mother. I kind of would have assumed that implies you are a caregiver unless you are regrettably the subject of a child protection order. But if you want me to acknowledge your caregiving responsibilities specifically I am happy to do so [mutters: especially if it'll shut you up]..."

You are right, although I've never thought of it that way. All of this "it takes a village" attitude has filtered down to parenting, as parents often look to someone ELSE to do the parenting for them.

Here's something to think about. There is a national movement for parents to get a nationally-mandated paid maternity/paternity leave. People would love to have the year off that some European countries give. Why not such a movement for people who take care of their parents?

With children it's called parenting but since that seems to be a dying profession I guess people need to be martyrs to raise their kids.

Pushes my buttons as well.

Caregiving adults is not the same thing as rearing a child or caring for someone else’s child. To me the only exception would be caring for a child with a severe ongoing condition or a life threatening illness.

Caregiving in my life...he cannot dress himself. He is incontinent both ways. He cannot wash himself. I do everything for Him but feed him. He presents with bed sores and rashes. He cannot pull a blanket up on him when he’s cold at night. When he drops something, he cannot pick it up. I would love to go one on one with these people that would think what I do is the same as child-rearing. My son would have to accompany me though, to keep me from going for their throats.

Subscribe to
Our Newsletter