Aging, Home & Family Expert

As an expert in aging and families, specializing in family caregiving and multigenerational issues, Amy Goyer is a consultant, speaker, writer and AARP Home & Family Expert. She is the primary caregiver for her father in Arizona. Follow her on Twitter @amygoyer and Pinterest! Connect on Facebook www.facebook.com/amygoyer1 or LinkedIn; she's agoyer here in the AARP Online Community.

More Grandparents Care for Grandkids, New Report Finds

Grandma’s house isn’t only a great place to visit. For a growing number of children, it’s a great place to move in during bad economic times. A new report from the Pew Research Center, “At Grandmother’s House We Stay“, found that grandparents were the primary caregivers for more than 3 million children in 2011, a 20 percent increase from a decade earlier. According to Pew, those numbers surged between 2007 and 2009, in the midst of the Great Recession. Contest: …

Building Your Caregiving Team

As a caregiver, I have had many “aha!” moments. The following excerpt from my upcoming book, AARP’s Juggling Work and Caregiving (available November 2013) describes one of those moments when I realized I needed to build up my caregiving team: Eight months after I’d relocated to Phoenix to help my parents, I found myself frozen, unable to drag myself out of bed and face my to-do list. I was emotionally exhausted and utterly overwhelmed. I leaned out of bed far enough to …

3 Things to Do Today to Prevent Falls

The phone calls from my Dad have come all too often. “Amy, your mother has had a fall,”  he’d say. I’d slide out of bed into my shoes and race to my parents’ apartment, sometimes meeting the emergency squad when I arrived.  We’d spend hours in the emergency room, grateful every time she came home without any broken bones or a concussion. Each fall set her back, increasing pain and limiting her mobility.  That resulted in less strength, poor circulation …

5 Things I’ve Learned as a Caregiver

I recently had the great pleasure of returning to Indiana, the state of my birth, to speak at three local AARP Indiana Caregiver Connect forums in Ft. Wayne, Indianapolis and Merrillville. It was a bittersweet experience. My parents were with me on my last visit to Indiana, where they both were born and raised. But now travel would be very difficult for them, so most likely they won’t return to Indiana until they are gone from this earth. As a …

5 Tips for Caregivers: Take a Break!

A colleague recently cautioned me about using the term “respite” because she thought people wouldn’t know its meaning. I found this ironic, because I actually believe it’s more likely that most of us don’t know how it feels rather than what it means in terms of getting a break from caring for family and friends. We rarely get to experience time completely away from the responsibility and stress of caregiving. That’s why I feel so lucky to have recently returned …

8 Tips for a Great Family Reunion

They were a boisterous group, the family I observed on the Durango-Silverton train recently while I was on vacation. They were laughing and telling stories and obviously enjoying their time together. I couldn’t resist… I struck up a conversation with one of the young women and learned they were having a family reunion in honor of her mother’s 70th birthday. They’d rented a house that accommodated 17 people and gathered in Durango, Colo., coming from Seattle, Nashville, Phoenix and Minneaapolis. …