Some of you may know that I’ve been working on another book this year. I wasn’t sure I was ready to write it, but once I started, it came pouring out of me. That’s how it is sometimes. In some ways, writing it was the easy part. Now, I need your input.
My mom was diagnosed with an aggressive form of dementia called Lewy body in early 2017 and passed away from it at the end of 2020. From fighting us about getting diagnosed, to the mad roller coaster of hallucinations, to the most painful decisions of my life, we lived through hell. I felt like I was constantly behind the 8-ball, trying to catch up and never quite making it. Feelings of guilt, rage, inadequacy, and despair coexisted at all times. This book tells my story. My greatest hope is that my story makes one caregiver feel a little less alone and a little more understood.
As I write this, it’s with my editor. The planned release date is Mother’s Day 2024.
But there’s a lot of work to do yet before it will be ready to go to print. And this is where you come in. I need your help answering some questions. I need as much input as I can get. Please consider replying to me about any or all of the following things.
What ideas do you have…
…about what caregiving is like?
…about how caregiving impacts the life of the caregiver?
…about how caregivers should function in their professional lives?
…about what kind of support caregivers need? Or don’t?
What does your workplace do…
…to support caregivers?
…to be flexible with work time when there are emergencies?
…to help caregivers continue to have a career?
Are there differences in the support available for salaried, management level staff versus what’s available for hourly employees in non-titled positions?
These are not rhetorical questions. I’m genuinely curious and interested to know your perspective. I would be sincerely grateful if you share your insights and experiences with me. And there are no wrong answers, to be clear.
Many caregivers are adult children helping to care for aging parents. The statistics from the Alzheimer’s Association about the rapidly increasing number of people affected by dementia alone are staggering. This is an issue that will affect our workplaces in ways I’m not sure many people are talking about.
Is that true? (Again, not a rhetorical question. Please help me understand your experience.)
Just to be clear, I’m not on a war path against companies. Quite the opposite. I’m wondering if these assumptions that I have are true. And if they are, what we can do to help support companies to better support their team members.
Will you help me? Share your experiences and perspective with me. And let me know if this is something impacting your life. I want to support you, too.