Sometime Life throws us a curved ball – and usually when we least expect it.
Sometimes it hits us out of the blue. Sometimes it creeps up on us – we know something isn’t quite right but we can’t put our finger on what it is.
This can be what happens with older relatives who develop the early signs of Dementia. You start off thinking “They’re just tired” or “Didn’t you hear me – I told you that 5 minutes ago!”
Once it becomes clear there’s something wrong, and whether there’s a definite diagnosis or not, the problem dealing with the situation falls onto the shoulders of either that person’s spouse or their children. Their spouse can find it difficult to find their way round a complex system that is creaking at the seams and can’t cope.
Their “children” are middle aged adults, may have their offspring at home because they can’t afford to move out. They may have children at university and be supplementing their loans.
They may look after their grandchildren because of the expense of childcare for their own children who will be working to pay a mortgage or rent.
People in their 50’s and 60’s thought they would get a State Pension at 60. Now they’ll have to wait until at least 66, so need to continue working to have an income.
They are the “Sandwich Generation”
So how are the “sandwich generation” going to sort out and perhaps provide Care for their relative with Dementia alongside everything else?
By trying to do everything. This isn’t a good idea.
They end up running themselves into the ground, feel they’ve lost their way, their identity and just want to get their life and work back to maintain their own income, health and well being.
So how can they get their Life & Work Back on Track? Here’s two suggestions:
1 – They can start by putting themselves first. This doesn’t mean being selfish and only taking their own needs into consideration. Tt does mean thinking through things before they do them to decide whether they are essential right now.
2 – They can draw up a responsibility chart with their family – which involves others agreeing to do their bit and not assuming that one person will do everything.
Simple but effective. It’s difficult to think straight when emotions are running high.
I’m here to help.
My “Get Your Life & Work Back on Track” sessions are designed with you in mind – to get you to a place where you can cope, whether you are in the “Sandwich Generation” or not.