Caring for Aging Parents and Boomerang Children Brings Financial and Physical Toll to Sandwich Generation
More and more Americans are providing financial and physical support to their elderly parents and children as the sluggish economy is affecting generations across the board.
Over 50% of young women and men ages 18 to 24 are moving back home to their parents and about 19% of men and 10% of women ages 25 to 34 are doing the same, some with children of their own. On the other end of the spectrum, aging moms and dads are in need of attention as well.
We are now seeing, as many as four different generations sharing a home. What happens when elderly parent need additional attention and financial resources?
What do Sandwich Generation parents to do in this situation- when the Boomerang Children move back in with their children and Grandma gets sick and moves in with the family?
Diana Beam, Founder of Keeping In Touch Solutions, said Our Sandwich Generation is caught between a rock and a hard place as they try to keep the family going financially at the same time stabilizing the emotional volume in the house. Everyone gets edgy because it is tax time or when the budget gets tight. So how do you know who and what you can claim as dependent – with so many different generations under one roof.
The March issue of Smart Money reported that you must provide over half the person’s support for the year. The list outlined some of the point to consider and also the “who” can be claimed as a dependent. The supported person must be your child including a stepchild, adopted child, or descendant of your child (typically a grandchild); or your brother, stepbrother, half-brother, sister, stepsister, half-sister, or a descendent of one of these individuals (typically a niece or nephew); or your son-in-law, daughter-in-law, father, stepfather, father-in-law, mother, stepmother, mother-in-law, brother-in-law, sister-in-law, aunt, or uncle.
Most caregivers are not prepared financially or physically for the big task of caring for aging parents and grown children- and sometimes toddlers and school age children. Many Sandwich Generation couples were looking forward to getting their life a bit more stable and getting a break from raising children and building a business or a career.
Suddenly the responsibilities hit them like a bolt of lightning. What happened? You paid thousands of dollars for your kids’ education only to have them home and you’re still supporting them! Now taking care of your parents’ physical and medical needs is a necessity.
Torn and deteriorating health, finances, spirit takes its toll. You are not alone.
One in five Americans are suffering in this economic times, lost their savings or do not have enough savings to support the responsibilities and daily needs ahead of them. Many are facing difficult choices and are unable to give aging parents the level of care they desire. So when talk of taxes comes about, the stress mounts. As always consult your accountant for detail about changes in tax law and seek advice on overlooked deductions. There are specific rules regarding taking elderly parent as deductions…especially if more than one family member is contributing financial care. In many states the state area on aging will be able to help you.
For more information about tax deductions for caregivers, please read our previous article on Tax Deductions for Caregiver. For tips on avoiding burnout, please read our article on Stop Caregiver’s Burnout. As always, consult with your local tax advisor.
How about the physical needs of the Sandwich Generation? Most because of stress are facing the risk of depression, weight issues, emotional stress, sleep deprivation, heart problems and many unhealthy symptoms related to being overly stressed. One common trait is lower immune system because stress will affect our immunity.
We can’t do it alone. Keeping in Touch Solutions wants to go on your journey as a caregiver. One tip from Diana Beam, Founder of Keeping in Touch Solutions to caregivers is TAKE A BREAK from time to time –even if it 15 minutes to sit quietly and focus only on deep breathing- you will feel the stress leaving your body.
We provide the first step on your caregiving journey. Helping families stay connected and helping you find that moment of ”peace of mind” is our hope. For more information about tax deductions for caregivers, please read our article on Tax Deductions for Caregivers and for tips on avoiding burnout, please read our article on Stop Caregiver’s Burnout.
A daily check-in call could be the lifeline, the joy you give someone that makes the biggest difference in their perception of what old age is like.
Contact me at 317-480-1038 today. Let’s make a difference together.
I’m Diana Beam, Founder of Keeping in Touch Solutions. It is my heartfelt desire for every person to live a happy and healthy life in the place they call home, no matter what their age. You can’t put a price on peace of mind for your parents and yourself. It’s priceless . . . and significant.
For that reason, the goal of every Keeping In Touch Solutions program is to provide a caring connection and service that both the elderly and their caregivers can rely on to make living that good life easier.
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