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Since caregivers are disproportionately women, who take more time away from work to care for others, their finances are also disproportionately impacted. In addition to money spent out-of-pocket on caregiving, time away from work can reduce current income and contributions toward retirement savings. As the following facts and figures show, reduced work hours and/or fewer years in the workforce may add up to a significant loss in assets.
In addition to providing care to an adult, women often simultaneously provide care for their children. The term, The Sandwich Generation, was coined by Dorothy Miller, a social worker in the 1980's who noted the increasingly common phenomena of multigenerational care-giving. Couples who put off having children until their mid to late 30s also experience parents who live longer and develop more ongoing health issues. Increasingly, women are not only taking time off of work, but time away from parenting their own children; and as we will discuss below, postponing their own health needs.
As you would expect, this predisposes caregivers to health problems of their own as a result of the physical and emotional stress of caregiving and failing to attend to their own needs.
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This material was prepared by John Galego1 National Alliance for Caregiving and AARP Public Policy Institute. Caregiving in the U.S. 2015Caring.com Usage and Attitudes Survey. San Mateo, CA. 2014AARP Public Policy Institute. Valuing the Invaluable: 2015 Update. Washington, D.C. 2015LS-LTC-13002-C ST 09/152 Family Caregiver Alliance, “Women and Caregiving: Facts and Figures,” FCA, https://www.caregiver.org/print/240, February 2015. (https://www.caregiver.org/women-and-caregiving-facts-and-figures)3 The MetLife Study of Caregiving Costs to Working Caregivers Double Jeopardy for Baby Boomers Caring for Their Parents, as cited in Family Caregiver Alliance, “Women and Caregiving: Facts and Figures,”FCA, https://www.caregiver.org/print/240, February 2015. (https://www.caregiver.org/women-and-caregiving-facts-and-figures)http://www.caregiving.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/06/mmi-caregiving-costsworking-caregivers.pdf4 Rice University Sociologists Calculate Caregivers Risk of Living in Poverty as cited in Family Caregiver Alliance, “Women and Caregiving: Facts and Figures,” FCA, https://www.caregiver.org/print/240, February2015. (https://www.caregiver.org/women-and-caregiving-facts-and-figures)6 Caregiving and risk of coronary heart disease in U.S. women: A prospective study. As cited in Family Caregiver Alliance, “Women and Caregiving: Facts and Figures,” FCA, https://www.caregiver.org/print/240,February 2015.7 Reverberations of family illness as cited in Family Caregiver Alliance, “Women and Caregiving: Facts and Figures,” FCA, https://www.caregiver.org/print/240, February 2015.5 What Is The Sandwich Generation? October 2015. https://www.aplaceformom.com/blog/10-05-15-what-is-the-sandwich-generation/8 Spousal Caregiving and Incident Hypertension, April 2012 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3836043/9 High Blood Pressure Is Even Riskier https://mindyourrisks.nih.gov/10 Long-Term Care - Important Information For Women, 2018. http://www.aaltci.org/long-term-care-insurance/learning-center/for-women.php