The Sandwich generation is moving toward the proverbial Dagwood sandwich, so filled with layers, it might just collapse. As care managers, we know the struggle adult children in their 50′ and 60’s have in dealing with their aging parents decline. But
in the past decade, the sandwich generation couples have been doubly stressed by the needed of their own 30ish adult children moving in because of stagnating US wages, displayed in this New York Time story this week.
On top of that, the sandwich is now triple-decker, because adult children in their 20’s cannot afford the housing whose cost that has skyrocketed around the country and crushing debt due to student loans. So they are descending on their parents too, creating two age groups of adult children moving in plus Baby Boomers aging parents already needing care. These former empty nesters are now boiling in a cauldron of stress, living the nightmare of a triple-decker sandwich generation family.
Most are ” Nearly Normal ” families. They made it through all of Erickson’s stages of life, supporting family and children through all the stages of life toddlers adolescence marriage etc. But then the proverbial ax descends and they can be knocked off balance. The losses sustained when older family members decline and at the same time they need to care of their midlife children- is similar to a decapitation’.
In the cases where caregiving takes up huge blocks of Baby Boomers ’ time, a nearly normal family member can crumble under the pressure exerted on other parts of their lives.
What’s more, significant family relationships are disrupted through the illness of an aging parent. For example, if a parent crisis occurs, such as the emergency hospitalization in a distant city, siblings in a nearly normal family can be shaken to the core.
Care Management and home care are an answer to turning down the heat on this cauldron, as they can refer the Nearly Normal Baby Boomers triple caregivers to caregiver support groups, help them balance the needs of triple family care family and their own needs and render direct care to their aging parents.
Find Out More About Why a Nearly Normal Family Needs a Care Manager