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Many parents experience care crises when the babysitter is sick or school is canceled, but what about when your own aging parents need care? Are you prepared? Do you even know what you need or when or how to find appropriate care?
Ten years ago, I wasn’t thinking about my parents getting older. I was preoccupied with raising young children and simply envisioned my own mom and dad as staying healthy forever. I never imagined the alternative. But suddenly, my father was rushed to the hospital – he needed a quadruple bypass. I was shaken to the core and realized that I hadn’t made any plans to support him or my mother as they aged. It didn’t even occur to me that they might need my help…at least so soon and so suddenly.
I know that there are millions like myself who are part of the Sandwich Generation – those who are simultaneously taking care of their children AND their aging parents. I just didn’t think I would be one of them, at least not yet. It can be both depressing and terrifying to realize that your parents may need special care at some point. This is why many of us can be in denial or even oblivious to the reality of senior care. Frankly, it can just be too painful to acknowledge.
But by the year 2030, the U.S. census predicts that the number of Americans over 65 years old will double. This means that most of the country will have at least one parent with failing mental or physical difficulties. Many families don’t have any idea or plan around how to deal with the impending senior care needs.
My advice to you is take a quick moment to complete our Senior Care Quiz to find out what your needs may be and if you need to take some action. Even if your parents are still vibrant and healthy, power walking around the neighborhood or jetting off to Africa on safari, advance planning can help you to avoid a crisis in the future.