This Year, I’m Thankful for Family Caregivers

Nancy was caring for her mother and husband, raising four children, and working full time when she ended up in the hospital, suffering from exhaustion. It was then that she realized that she couldn’t help her loved ones unless she also took care of herself. Like Nancy, many family caregivers are on call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. In addition to helping their older parents, spouses and other loved ones, they work full or part time, raise children …

AARP Recognized by Rosalynn Carter Institute for Caregiving

Throughout my work to support family caregivers across the states, and my own caregiving journey, first lady Rosalynn Carter has been an inspiration. She is not only a leader in caregiving advocacy, education, research and support, but knows firsthand the joys and challenges of caregiving. Mrs. Carter first became a family caregiver at age 12 when her father was diagnosed with terminal leukemia, and went on to care for other family members over the years. Today she stands as a …

Help! My Loved One Can No Longer Manage Her Finances

Jennifer had recently relocated to Wisconsin. When she went home to visit Grandma Jeanne and Grandpa Bill, she realized things were bad. “There was an overdue bill on the counter, fruit flies in the kitchen, decaying boxes full of carryout in the fridge, and my grandpa, who had always been overweight, was looking downright thin. I was shocked,” Jennifer shared on AARP’s I Heart Caregivers. Photos: A week in the life of a family caregiver » “Long story short my grandma …

Can Your Nurse Prescribe Medication?

As many family caregivers know, getting our parents, spouses or other loved ones from one place to another can sometimes be a challenge, especially if they have impaired mobility. When I was caring for my parents, taking Mom — who was confined to a wheelchair — to see the doctor was an all-day ordeal, even though his office was only a short distance away. We had to wait for the special transport van to come, wait at the doctor’s, and …

Teenage Caregiver Helped Father as He Battled Cancer

This year I had the honor of meeting Kyllian, a young New Jerseyan who, as a teenager, was a caregiver for her father. Throughout his battle with cancer, she would come home after high school every day to care for him. Her dad lost his battle to cancer a few years ago, but Kyllian’s passionate advocacy for family caregivers burns brightly. She is now in her early 20s, and her youth caregiver group is among the many supporters of the …

Thank You, Family Caregivers, for Your Labor of Love

En español | This Labor Day, I want to take a moment to recognize the 40 million Americans who perform a great labor of love every day caring for older parents, spouses and other loved ones.  While they wouldn’t have it any other way, family caregivers often have a big job. Some are on call 24-7 and often they can’t even take a break. “One day my mom became ill and my life changed in a moment, I knew I …