All major life transitions require preparation and adaptation. Graduation, moving into your first apartment, landing your first job, getting married, having kids, changing careers, retiring — each of these life events typically comes with a lot of planning. Becoming a caregiver for an aging parent, however, is an event that takes many people by surprise.
Sometimes, there’s a sudden health crisis like a stroke or a deteriorating chronic condition. Other times, the turning point is a long time coming, but is obscured by denial.
Many of the 65 million Americans who provide care for a loved one wish they could go back and take more time to prepare. They wish they had known which questions to ask, which steps to take, and how to best assess the situation so that they could guarantee the best quality of life for their parents and themselves.