The Three Pillars of Parental Care: Add Up to One Impossible Job

My best friend from college and I use a term “the hard professor,” as shorthand for situations where our heroic efforts haven’t felt good enough. It comes from an analogy I created to make a point. It worked like this:  If you were in a class with a professor who, in 20 years of teaching, had never given a grade higher than a “B” and you earned a “B+,” would you be mad at yourself for not getting an “A?”

I’ve learned that when you lose perspective about the value of your efforts, it’s always nice to have a friend point out that you are in the hard professor’s class.

Read More

Why Daughterhood?

I was trying to explain to a male colleague why I was naming my new (at the time) website “Daughterhood.org.” He’s an expert on aging and shares responsibility with his sister for their mother’s care. So, I wanted his advice on creating a resource that helps families care for their parents.

When he heard the name of the website, his first reaction was: “So this isn’t for me?” A couple of other men were confused too.

They thought I was being impractical. Why would I go to the trouble and expense of building an organization to help people manage their parents’ care and then name the website in such an exclusive way – potentially losing half of an audience who would benefit from the information and resources.

Read More

Daughterhood: The Ultimate Career Disrupter

The idea of “daughterhood” as a career-disrupter occupies little social media, blogging, and media real estate relative to motherhood. BUT, being a daughter can wreck a woman’s professional plans faster than anyone can say, “lean in,” or “play big.”

Taking care of an aging parent is the furtive, not-talked-about “de-railer” of women’s careers — not to mention their own health and sanity. I write and talk a lot about caring for the frail elderly. It’s what I have been doing for the past 20 years.

Here’s what I know about how this new life challenge takes the motherhood-career dilemma and makes it look like small time problems.

Read More
[gravityform id="1" title="false" description="false"]
<script type="text/javascript">var gform;gform||(document.addEventListener("gform_main_scripts_loaded",function(){gform.scriptsLoaded=!0}),window.addEventListener("DOMContentLoaded",function(){gform.domLoaded=!0}),gform={domLoaded:!1,scriptsLoaded:!1,initializeOnLoaded:function(o){gform.domLoaded&&gform.scriptsLoaded?o():!gform.domLoaded&&gform.scriptsLoaded?window.addEventListener("DOMContentLoaded",o):document.addEventListener("gform_main_scripts_loaded",o)},hooks:{action:{},filter:{}},addAction:function(o,n,r,t){gform.addHook("action",o,n,r,t)},addFilter:function(o,n,r,t){gform.addHook("filter",o,n,r,t)},doAction:function(o){gform.doHook("action",o,arguments)},applyFilters:function(o){return gform.doHook("filter",o,arguments)},removeAction:function(o,n){gform.removeHook("action",o,n)},removeFilter:function(o,n,r){gform.removeHook("filter",o,n,r)},addHook:function(o,n,r,t,i){null==gform.hooks[o][n]&&(gform.hooks[o][n]=[]);var e=gform.hooks[o][n];null==i&&(i=n+"_"+e.length),gform.hooks[o][n].push({tag:i,callable:r,priority:t=null==t?10:t})},doHook:function(n,o,r){var t;if(r=Array.prototype.slice.call(r,1),null!=gform.hooks[n][o]&&((o=gform.hooks[n][o]).sort(function(o,n){return o.priority-n.priority}),o.forEach(function(o){"function"!=typeof(t=o.callable)&&(t=window[t]),"action"==n?t.apply(null,r):r[0]=t.apply(null,r)})),"filter"==n)return r[0]},removeHook:function(o,n,t,i){var r;null!=gform.hooks[o][n]&&(r=(r=gform.hooks[o][n]).filter(function(o,n,r){return!!(null!=i&&i!=o.tag||null!=t&&t!=o.priority)}),gform.hooks[o][n]=r)}});</script> <div class='gf_browser_safari gform_wrapper home-name-email-optin_wrapper gform_legacy_markup_wrapper' id='gform_wrapper_1' ><form method='post' enctype='multipart/form-data' id='gform_1' class='home-name-email-optin gform_legacy_markup' action='/blog/page/6/' novalidate> <div class='gform_body gform-body'><ul id='gform_fields_1' class='gform_fields top_label form_sublabel_below description_below'><li id="field_1_1" class="gfield gfield_contains_required field_sublabel_hidden_label field_description_below hidden_label gfield_visibility_visible" data-js-reload="field_1_1"><label class='gfield_label gfield_label_before_complex' >Name<span class="gfield_required"><span class="gfield_required gfield_required_asterisk">*</span></span></label><div class='ginput_complex ginput_container no_prefix has_first_name no_middle_name no_last_name no_suffix gf_name_has_1 ginput_container_name' id='input_1_1'> <span id='input_1_1_3_container' class='name_first' > <input type='text' name='input_1.3' id='input_1_1_3' value='' aria-required='true' placeholder='First name' /> <label for='input_1_1_3' class='hidden_sub_label screen-reader-text'>First</label> </span> </div></li><li id="field_1_2" class="gfield gfield_contains_required field_sublabel_below field_description_below hidden_label gfield_visibility_visible" data-js-reload="field_1_2"><label class='gfield_label' for='input_1_2' >Email<span class="gfield_required"><span class="gfield_required gfield_required_asterisk">*</span></span></label><div class='ginput_container ginput_container_email'> <input name='input_2' id='input_1_2' type='email' value='' class='large' placeholder='Email address' aria-required="true" aria-invalid="false" /> </div></li><li id="field_1_3" class="gfield gform_validation_container field_sublabel_below field_description_below gfield_visibility_visible" data-js-reload="field_1_3"><label class='gfield_label' for='input_1_3' >Name</label><div class='ginput_container'><input name='input_3' id='input_1_3' type='text' value='' autocomplete='new-password'/></div><div class='gfield_description' id='gfield_description_1_3'>This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.</div></li></ul></div> <div class='gform_footer top_label'> <input type='submit' id='gform_submit_button_1' class='gform_button button' value='Subscribe' onclick='if(window["gf_submitting_1"]){return false;} if( !jQuery("#gform_1")[0].checkValidity || jQuery("#gform_1")[0].checkValidity()){window["gf_submitting_1"]=true;} ' onkeypress='if( event.keyCode == 13 ){ if(window["gf_submitting_1"]){return false;} if( !jQuery("#gform_1")[0].checkValidity || jQuery("#gform_1")[0].checkValidity()){window["gf_submitting_1"]=true;} jQuery("#gform_1").trigger("submit",[true]); }' /> <input type='hidden' class='gform_hidden' name='is_submit_1' value='1' /> <input type='hidden' class='gform_hidden' name='gform_submit' value='1' /> <input type='hidden' class='gform_hidden' name='gform_unique_id' value='' /> <input type='hidden' class='gform_hidden' name='state_1' value='WyJbXSIsImEwOGJlZWNjNjQ3NjYxMTliMjY1ODdiM2VhZWRjMjA0Il0=' /> <input type='hidden' class='gform_hidden' name='gform_target_page_number_1' id='gform_target_page_number_1' value='0' /> <input type='hidden' class='gform_hidden' name='gform_source_page_number_1' id='gform_source_page_number_1' value='1' /> <input type='hidden' name='gform_field_values' value='' /> </div> <p style="display: none !important;"><label>&#916;<textarea name="ak_hp_textarea" cols="45" rows="8" maxlength="100"></textarea></label><input type="hidden" id="ak_js_1" name="ak_js" value="135"/><script>document.getElementById( "ak_js_1" ).setAttribute( "value", ( new Date() ).getTime() );</script></p></form> </div>