‘Quit or get fired’ is a dilemma for many individuals in the sandwich generation.
The constant responsibilities linked to raising your children, caring for your elder parents, and juggling a full-time or part-time career can be overwhelming.
It is a difficult choice to make between caring for your loved ones, while also being able to perform well at work and thrive in your career. It can become exhausting which is why it is important to recognize the signs of burnout and act accordingly.
Members of the sandwich generation are often faced with challenges such as:
- Making time to take care of yourself on a physical and emotional level
- Balancing time with your partner or spouse
- Spending quality time with your children or family
- Ensuring your aging adult gets the care they need to keep them healthy and happy
- Performing well at work while looking for career advancement or promotion
- Keeping up with bills and staying on budget
- Dealing with the stress and guilt you may feel about not having the time or energy to accomplish everything
For aging adults who may have chronic or cognitive conditions, doctor’s appointments and lab tests can become overwhelming. Eventually your sick or personal days run. The constant juggling to assist aging loved ones can put a real strain on your relationships and productivity at work.
Studies done by Statistics Canada states that 1 in 7 caregivers reduce the hours they work. Half of them reported missed days at work in order to get their parents, kids, partners, or siblings to medical appointments. This can create a real dilemma.
Although it may sound overwhelming, those in the sandwich generation have ways to combat these dilemmas.
Communicate your needs
Understanding yourself is an important part of being a caregiver. Being able to recognize when your daily dilemmas are taking a toll on your mental and physical health should be your number one priority.
Being able to communicate your stresses, concerns, or feelings of guilt in a safe space is important. Be sure to communicate your needs as a way to vent or a way to get advice on the challenges you are experiencing.
Talking to your parents, partner, children, or siblings is a great way to ensure everyone is on the same page and understands that you are doing the best you can. In most cases, your loved ones are willing to lend a helping hand – you just have to ask.
Share responsibilities if possible
You are not superwoman/superman! Although we may experience moments where we seem to be doing it all, it often does not last for long. It is easy to spread ourselves thin and experience anxiety, or depression when calendars get full or task lists get too long.
It is okay.
Seek help from your family who can help. If you have siblings, see if they can help with your parents’ care. Seek outside sources who are qualified and ready to help. Ask your kids or partner to help with tasks around the house – many hands make light work.
This can help lighten your load and give you some time back to rest and recharge. It’s not an easy thing to be in the sandwich generation, but taking on too much can leave you trapped in a list of challenges.
Ask for help
Enlisting help from outside sources is a sign of strength. Having the ability to recognize when you are burnt out, or realizing how different your life could be if you had a little more time is important!
At iAccompany, our founders experienced this dilemma themselves. When they could no longer provide care for their aging parents while juggling their work responsibilities they searched for a solution that fit their needs. When they didn’t find one, they created one.
Now, iAccompany serves as an easy solution for family caregivers that need to get some time back for themselves. Our service provides accompaniment for aging adults – a qualified nurse will accompany them to, during, and from their doctor’s appointment.
When they are returned home safely, you will receive a full report providing the details of the meeting. With iAccompany, you do not need to leave work early, instead you can hire us at the click of a button and still be a huge part of your loved ones healthcare.
Are you a caregiver stuck in a dilemma yourself? Visit our website and learn how we can help!