Stress for ‘Sandwich Generation”
Prince George, B.C. – They are called the ‘sandwich generation” those who are raising their own children while looking after the needs of their own aging parents. According to a new survey, they are struggling.A province wide poll conducted by Insights West, has concluded 9 in 10 members of the ‘sandwich generation’ are facing challenges in their double duty role.
More than half of respondents say they have difficulty in finding time to visit their aging parents due to work/busy schedules (64%). 60% said they have challenges in keeping informed about the health status of a parent. A further 56% reported financial concerns as they are struggling with the costs that go with providing care.
According to Statistics Canada, an average of 3 in 10 Canadians are both raising children and responsible for the care of their elderly parents.
“The poll results certainly confirm what most of us have been hearing at backyard BBQs and community functions for a while now,” says Daniel Fontaine, CEO for the BC Care Providers Association. “As our population rapidly ages, a significant number of British Columbians currently deal with or are facing the prospect of becoming part of the ‘sandwich generation’ at some point soon.”
British Columbians who don’t form part of the “sandwich generation” but know someone who is, were asked how their friends and acquaintances were managing the situation. A majority (65%) said they were coping “not too well” or “not well at all”. More than half (56%) of respondents who are not part of the “sandwich generation” also report they are “not too confident” or “not confident at all” that adequate seniors care will be there when they need it.
“Notwithstanding the fact we have an excellent seniors care system in British Columbia, there is clearly the need for us to make targeted investments and implement new innovations,” says Fontaine. “When we invest in providing adequate care for our seniors, there is often a direct benefit to their families as well,” says Fontaine.
The release of the survey comes days before the BC Care Providers Association will release its own report which includes a number of recommendations to ease the pressure many B.C. families are facing.