Do you currently provide for and take care of your children and your aging parents? If so, you are a member of the sandwich generation.
This is a generation of people, typically women in their late 30s and 40s, who provide the majority of care for both their kids and their parents at the same time. This has become a normal process for families in today’s society.
What is The Sandwich Generation?
In 1981, social worker Dorothy Miller coined the phrase, “sandwich generation.” Believe it or not, this generation is now broken down into three specific groups. Journalist Carol Abaya breaks down the groupings as such:
- Club Sandwich
- Open Faced
With traditional, you split your time caring for aging parents who need help while supporting your children.
The club sandwich is broken down ever further. This includes those in their 50s and 60s who care for aging parents, adult children, and grandchildren or people in their 30s and 40s with young children, aging parents and grandparents.
Open faced covers the remainder of people who care for the elderly.
Sandwich Generation Traits
It’s common for members of the sandwich generation to have stress and feel burnt out. In some cases, caring for both your children and parents causes financial problems as well.
This generation is growing quickly, and their caregiving responsibilities are beginning to affect work and other responsibilities. Making career adjustments has become common and necessary, searching for more flexibility to have time for your family duties.
Give Yourself Time
You may feel as if you have no time for yourself, but it’s important to take a step back and re-focus. Spend some time on you! Go out with your friends, go shopping, read a new book, or join in on activities in your community.
Juggling responsibilities is exhausting and tiring, so it’s also important to get the rest you need to maintain a healthy lifestyle. In this case, you won’t be able to support and care for anyone in your family if you don’t take care of yourself first.
Preparation is Key
Preparation can save you a lot of time and money during the process of caring for both your children and aging parents. By setting goals and expectations, you can develop the perfect plan.
Begin saving money and investing in your future, such as a retirement plan or saving for your children’s college. Furthermore, control your debt and make sure that payments and bills don’t account for a majority of your take-home pay each month.
Encourage your kids and give them realistic expectations for the future. This will help them grow into productive and successful adults with an understanding of their responsibilities.
Lastly, ask your siblings if they can help out with your parents as well. Don’t face this on your own!
At SBH Coaching, we’re here to help you align and accomplish your goals through midlife. You never have to feel trapped again!
With our training and programs, you will regain the confidence you need to overcome any challenge!