Sandwich generation takes a hit supporting adult children and aging parents
More parents are providing significant financial support for their adult children even as they cope with the needs of their own aging parents, according to a new survey of the middle-aged “sandwich generation.”
The twin financial and emotional burdens on the one in seven Americans who are squeezed between their children and their parents have mounted since the recession, the Pew Research Center said in a report released Wednesday. In 2005, 20 percent of all middle-aged parents were the primary source of financial support for a grown child. Now, 27 percent of parents fit that description.
The increase is striking since the share of middle-aged adults with children and living parents has remained stable.
For at least three decades, sociologists have noticed a trend of more parents paying much of the freight until their children are well into their 20s, but the faltering economy has caused those numbers to spike.
“The causes include the difficulty young adults have finding decent employment and the longer time they take to get the education they need,” said Andrew Cherlin, a sociologist at Johns Hopkins University who studies families. “Until we figure out how to integrate young adults into the economy, their parents will be called upon to support them.”
My Experience – By Cynthia Barbour
My experience with raising my special needs triplets for almost 22 years has been an challenging ride, but as my parents started reaching their senior years I found myself having an added responsibility of caring for my parents as well. My Mom died of cancer about 9 years ago, I ended having to care for my Dad, I allowed him to have his independence until about 4 years ago when he started having issues with falling. I ended having to take care of him full time( the toll on me was troubling).
One thing that has held me up is God, my wonderful husband, and supports from the VA(my Dad is a Veteran). I have been very blessed when it comes to having some great resources that have helped me including counseling. It is a great need to seek help when you feel that you are finding hard to cope, it helps to keep you grounded, and also it is important to get respite so you can have a few hours of time for yourself.
I also found it very rewarding to be entrepreneur, I have had several work at home businesses through all of my years,even before I became a Mom. It has been an amazing experience to be able to work from home and be my own boss, being in control of my time, working when I wanted. When I had my triplets I would work when they took naps, and when they went to sleep at night. As they got older and started to attend school I would work when they were at school.
My children will be turning 22 this year and my husband and myself have decided to continue to care for my children, we will continue to care for them until we are unable to. My Dad is dying of kidney failure so I decided to have him die at home, he is under hospice care, hospice has been great and he is comfortable.
Taking care of my children and my elderly Dad only have been possible due to being able to be an entrepreneur, the freedom and the fulfillment is just incredible.
To Your Success