A 2015 AARP survey of family caregivers found that more than half felt they had no choice. Those who felt trapped in caregiving duties face higher levels of stress and anxiety.
There is another angle to this issue. This same study found that caregivers usually spend 24.4 hours caring for someone else. About 25 percent provide 41 hours of care per week or more. What happens if you have a full-time job, can’t afford to quit, and must care for your mom? How do you balance caregiving and work?
Start with a Family Meeting
If you cut your hours or quit your job, the loss of income isn’t the only consideration. You could lose your health and dental insurance coverage. You could lose retirement plans like 401k. You end up putting yourself at risk for being in an impossible financial situation in the future if you need senior care services. Quitting a job is often impossible for men and women who haven’t reached retirement age.
Sit down and talk to your family. If you’re going to provide the care, you can’t do it alone when you have a job. Even if your mom moves in with you or you move in with her, you’re going to need coverage. Find out who can fill the gaps when you’re commuting, working, or need a break.
If you live separately to your mom, you need to add commute times to this. Commute times will deduct from the hours you’re available to help your parent.
Talk to Your Boss
The second thing to do is to talk to your boss. Even if you don’t think your boss would shift your schedule, it’s best to make the company aware that you’re going to be caring for an aging parent. It may be recommended that you fill out FMLA paperwork just in case you need unpaid time off and don’t want to lose your job.
Some companies aid workers who are going to be family caregivers. It’s not always the case, but it doesn’t hurt to see if anything is available. It could be as simple as having access to legal services that could help with power of attorney paperwork and wills.
Partner with a Senior Care Agency
What do you do when your mom needs more help than you have time for? You can’t stop working. Your mom’s Alzheimer’s symptoms aren’t going to disappear. There’s a way to balance your mom’s care and your career. It all starts with a call to a senior care agency. Talk to a senior care specialist about Alzheimer’s care services like meal preparation, transportation, and medication reminders. Call now.
If you or an aging loved-one is considering Senior Care in Rancho Santa Margarita, CA, please contact the caring staff at Easy Living Home Care today. Providing Non-Medical Home Care Services in Orange County, CA since 2009. Call for Assistance: (949) 282-5017 or (949) 842-6831.