Caregiver Newsletter

Produced by Caregiver Media Group, publishers of  Today's Caregiver magazine and

Thursday June 11 2009 - Issue #436

Welcome to the latest edition of the newsletter.

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From The Editor

Gary Barg - Editor-in-chief 

Caregiver Dad

As a wise person once stated, there are Lies, Damn Lies, and Statistics. For example, when we started hosting conferences in 1998, three years after both Today’s Caregiver magazine and were launched, the statistics would have suggested that only around 20% of our 350 attendees would be male caregivers.  Yet, as we walked around the conference hall, by our rough estimates, at least 40% of the caregivers in attendance were men.  And a few years later, freshly minted statistics stated that, lo and behold, the percentage of male caregivers was around  45%.  Don’t get me wrong, there are many of our events where I feel like the lone male in the room, but not always.  And not to stereotype, there are specific challenges that male caregivers can face, for example, changing your mothers undergarments
As Father's Day rapidly approaches, I would like to take a moment to honor the male caregivers in this world.    Some examples of dedicated male caregivers that come to mind are my friend Steve, who moved to India with his ailing parents, to ensure that they were both able to have affordable healthcare for as long as they lived (he is back stateside living in Iowa.) Another one, of course, is Carlos Gibbons, Leeza’s dad, who was a steadfast and unwavering partner in care to his wife, Jean.  I wouldn’t want to forget my own grandfather who, until his very last days and even as Alzheimer’s disease was stealing him away from us, was only interested in the health of my grandmother as she was dealing with the effects of strokes, diabetes and depression. Nor my own dad, who along with my mom cared for their family and friends unswervingly and unselfishly and to whom everything we do for family caregivers is dedicated. 
Please share your story of male caregiving, either as one or someone who loves one.  We will share your stories for next week’s special Father’s Day edition.



Take care

Gary Barg

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Caregiver Bookclub
Take a look at the books in our bookclub.  Listen to the interview with two of the authors.

Feature Article

Parkinson's Disease: Tips for Caregivers

By  Sandra Ray, Staff Writer

With more than one million people affected with Parkinson’s disease in the United States today, there are many issues that caregivers are either facing now or will face in the future...Continued

Care Verse
Silver Tendrils About My Heart

By  Sherry Norman

Hairbrush running through long sliver hair
Snapping, crackling, sparking shining bright
Curling about fingers with a life of its own
Tendrils wrapping tight like those about my heart ...Continued

Guest Column
Helping Family Members to Deal
with a Fall Risk
By Steven Allred, MS,PT, and Jennifer Ellis, MS,PT

“I’ve fallen and I can’t get up!” How many times have we heard comics deliver that line from a now-famous 1980s TV commercial? The truth is that a dangerous fall is no laughing matter.  It’s a real worry — for those who suffer from balance dysfunction and for the family caregiver...Continued

(Do you have a story? Tell us.)



Aging in Place: A Real Choice
By Helen Hunter, ACSW, CMSW 

As people age, they may be faced with making the decision as to whether to move out of their existing home where they have raised family. Too often, these homes are not conducive to the physical challenges that elders may face in their advancing years....Continued


My dad is mentally incompetent. We don't know exactly what is wrong because we cannot get him to go to the doctor, which is one reason I am writing. I live in TN, but my dad lives in IL. After the recent death of his girlfriend who was taking care of him, my brother has brought him home, but is unable to care for him. I will be going home in about three weeks to help my brother tend to my dad's apartment.

My brother has had power of attorney over his finances for about four years now. Currently my dad has outstanding balances with two credit card companies. My brother contacted them to see if my dad could be released from the debt, the best they could do was offer to take half and be done with it. That would be about $700-$800 for each one which my dad cannot do nor can my brother.

How can we get my dad to go to the doctor with out gagging and binding him? Are there any laws in IL? I have done searches for these topics and have come up with nothing. What about the credit cards? My brother has been told to just stop paying them, however, I find it unethical even if the consequences will not affect my dad. Any and all help greatly appreciated.

Answer This Week's CareNote Support Group Directory. Click here for information about any caregiver support groups in your area.

Caregivers need your help. Please add information about your local support groups to our Support Group Directory. Include the name of the group, where and when it meets, city and state and support group leader contact information.

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Inside This Issue:

Caregiver Dad
Parkinson's Disease: Tips for Caregivers
Guest Column
Helping Family Members to Deal with a Fall Risk


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Let's Talk -
June 2009

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