Are You Torn Between a Career and Caregiving?



Are You Torn Between a Career and Caregiving?

Many family caregivers are faced with the difficult decision to choose between a career and caregiving responsibilities.

Not long ago, actor Rob Lowe brought caregiving into the spotlight by sharing his story of caring for his mother and the toll it took on his own life. He said, “When you’re caring for a loved one, there’s nothing you won’t do to give them as much comfort and peace of mind as you can possibly provide. Often that means you’ll skip your social obligations, wreck your diet, suffer sleep deprivation, and even risk your career.” So, does that mean you need to choose between a career and caregiving for an older loved one?

Obviously, this topic is not anything new to the 75% of the United States workforce who are concurrently providing care for a parent at home. Based on a study performed by Harvard Business School, 80% of those family caregivers are finding it difficult to keep up with their professional responsibilities because of their caregiving duties. And, close to a third of them end up relinquishing their careers to focus more on the care their loved one needs. 

Yet on the other hand, businesses appear to be less familiar with the difficulties faced by their employees, and the fatigue that comes from balancing responsibilities between home and work, pointing out in the study excuses such as, “It’s none of our business,” and “The volume of use of caregiving benefits is low enough that it is not necessary to track it.” And the vast majority of those employees agree that their organization’s culture isn’t as supportive as they would like in regard to fulfilling needs on the job along with needs at home.

So how can employees help to drive the workplace improvements needed to make sure the increasing army of working family caregivers is provided with both the understanding and resources necessary for an effective work/life balance? It begins with speaking up to produce the necessary awareness of the issue. Businesses need to comprehend the impact family caregiving has on their employees to retain the staff members most likely to depart due to caregiving stress: younger workers, higher-ranking workers, and higher-earning workers. Look into and suggest caregiving benefits your employer could offer, and then don’t be afraid to utilize those benefits when offered. 

At the same time, keep in mind that Hired Hands Homecare provides an extremely personalized care solution that allows employed loved ones to focus more fully on their careers, knowing their senior loved ones are receiving the excellent care they need in the home. 

Our respite care in Pleasanton and the surrounding areas allows you as much time away as needed for your career and other responsibilities and activities. Give us a call at (866) 940-4343 to arrange a free in-home consultation to explore our specialized in-home care services for seniors, and how we can partner with your employer to provide caregiving benefits for staff members.





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