Wanna hear something scary? As baby boomers get older — and possibly develop health problems — often the only thing standing between you and living in a nursing home is….a daughter.
Laurel Kennedy has written an incredibly timely book called The Daughter Trap: Taking Care of Mom and Dad…and You, which details how women inevitably are trapped in the caregiver role, even when other siblings (males) are capable of carrying out the same responsibilities. Kennedy, an authority on multigenerational issues, says that adult daughters become the caregiver for aging relatives — whether they are prepared to or not, whether they have demanding careers or not, whether they have kids or not, whether they are geographically nearby or not. “As if it were the natural order of things, the extended family assumes that a daughter will step in and step up to the plate to handle matters — for no other reason than the fact that she’s a woman.”
Dr. Jeffrey Rosenfeld, director of the Hofstra University Gerontology Program praises the book: “Laurel Kennedy does for caregiving what Betty Friedan did for marriage and motherhood. The Daughter Trap says something new and important about aging, family and caregiving in America today.”
The book is based on hundred of interviews, and outlines what individuals, employers and others can do to alleviate the pressures of caring for elderly relatives.