Mother’s Day is this coming Sunday (although it could be
argued that every day is Mother’s Day.) At every conference
where our mom has joined us, we always introduce her as the
mother of Today’s Caregiver magazine and caregiver.com.
Truth be told, this is more than just a little accurate.
It was by watching her dedication to our dad and
grandparents that allowed me to see what challenges
caregivers face on a daily basis. It was into her back
bedroom that I trudged with the first pieces of computer
equipment we used to start the magazine way back in 1994.
It was her honesty and commitment which allowed her to write
an ongoing column called “Phoenix Rising” about her life
after caregiving including dating again, identity theft and
job hunting as a senior citizen. (Don’t tell her I called
As I write this, I know that we all have stories to tell
about out moms— good, not-so-very-good and frustrating.
Take the time to tell them how you feel on Sunday, either in
person, on the phone or in silent prayer. Forgive the
forgivable transgressions which are somewhat unavoidable
when raising children and thank them for the role they
played in your becoming who you have become. Even if they
cannot understand the words you say, the emotions will come
through loud and clear. In fact, since the ratio
between male to female caregivers is nearly 45/55, the
stereotypical role of Mom as caregiver may be changing
before our eyes. But that is a story best saved for Father’s
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Listen to the interview with two of
Caregiving for a Parent or Elderly
By Patricia St. Clair
Throughout our lives we are usually
identified by our roles as son, daughter, brother,
sister or parent.
As our parents age, however,
roles often reverse or take on new
Band of Brothers
Men gather ‘round the table,
coffee cups in hand;
each wearing symbols of wars gone by.
Military experiences shared;
the peer support ever so strong....Continued
Considerations for Caregivers
By Arthur N. Gottlieb MSW, LMSW, CSA
Caregiving is not for everyone. Remember,
it’s not about you. If the relationship is too
emotionally charged or patience is not your best
virtue, find someone else to take over the
primary role of caregiver.
(Do you have a story?
Brain Exercises for Caregivers
By Cheryl Ellis, Staff Writer
Brain foods and brain vitamins have naturally
led to brain stimulating exercises.
It’s considered “old news” that anagrams and
crossword puzzles help the brain work out....Continued
My 86 year old mother has
been diagnosed with
cancer. Right now she is
living with my sister (who
we will call Sis) who is her
primary caregiver. Sis is an
attorney and has a fledgling
practice. Her husband
works from home 4 days a
week. He is with my mother a
good deal of the time. My
husband and I are retired
and live about an
hour away. We have two other
sisters, and a brother
who see and call my mother
when they can.
I call regularly and see her
at least once a week. So 95%
of the caregiving falls on
Sis and her husband.
My mother is in the middle
of radiation treatments.
She goes 5 days a week.
My sister takes her 4 of the
days, I take her one day. I
take her to her various
doctor's appointments and am
in the process of cleaning
out her apartment and moving
her permanently to Sis.
My mom is experiencing some
problems with short term
memory loss. She is
also taking Percoset for
pain which probably adds to
that problem. The radiation
is starting to take a toll
on her. She is
experiencing vomiting and
diarrhea. In my
mother's mind, it seems that
she can only deal with the
fact that she is feeling
sick. She cannot seem
to understand that this is
short term and if she can
get through these next
couple of weeks, she will
start to feel better.
The doctors seem to feel
that she has somewhat of a
chance of curing the cancer.
One of the issues is that my
mom does not seem to have
much of a will to try to
fight the cancer.
Sis has been taking such
good care of my
mother. She has a wound
which has to be dressed
twice a day. Not a
pleasant thing, but Sis has
been doing it since
February. She fights
my sister every step of the
way and it is really taking
on toll on Sis. She doesn't
want to take the anti-nausea
and anti diarrhea medicine.
She complains when Sis
leaves for work. She
doesn't want to get out of
bed. Today she
refused to go for
radiation. Sis is a very
strong person, but I think
she is at her breaking
What more can I say.
I'm sure our story is a
familiar one. What can
we do to make it easier on
all of us? Are there
resources available? And how
do we find out about them?
Any help you can give will
be so very much appreciated.
Answer This Week's
Support Group Directory. Click
here for information about any
caregiver support groups in your
need your help.
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