Balancing Family Life and Family Caregiving

You missed an important meeting at work because your mom fell in her shower.

You left your son’s big soccer game to take your dad to a doctor’s appointment.

You forgot to make cookies for your daughter’s school bake sale because you were busy making dinner for your aging parents.

If this sounds like your life, you’re not alone. 

According to the Family Caregiver Alliance:

  • Approximately 34.2 million Americans have provided unpaid care to an adult age 50 or older in the last 12 months. 
  • The majority of caregivers (82%) care for one other adult, while 15% care for two adults and 3% care for 3 or more adults.
  • About 15.7 million adult family caregivers care for someone who has Alzheimer’s disease or other dementia. 
  • Family caregivers spend an average of 24.4 hours per week providing care. Nearly one in four caregivers spends 41 hours or more per week providing care. 
  • Unpaid caregivers report that positive activities in their daily lives are reduced by 27.2% as a result of their caregiving responsibilities. 

“For many, caregiving is a very rewarding experience, but it can also be very stressful – especially when it impacts your job and your family life,” said Sierra Goetz, operations manager at the HomeCare Advocacy Network (HCAN). “Balancing caregiving responsibilities with work, kids’ activities, and life, in general, can be overwhelming. That’s why it’s so important for family caregivers to prioritize their own health and well-being.”

Talk to your employer about your caregiving responsibilities

If you’re trying to balance caregiving with a full-time job, you’ll likely need to have a flexible, understanding, and supportive workplace. If your bosses are fully aware of your situation, they’re more likely to try and let you take time off for doctor’s appointments or answer calls during work hours. 

Focus on self-care

It’s hard to justify taking time for yourself when others need you, but self-care is essential. You’ll be a better caregiver if you eat well, exercise, relax and get plenty of rest.

Ask friends and family members for support

No one can do it all… all the time. It’s okay to ask your spouse, other relatives or friends to help clean, cook or take the kids so you can have a night off. Also, check to see if there’s a caregiver support group in your area – they’re great for emotional support. 

Enlist the help of a professional caregiver

Whether it’s for a few hours a day or a few days a week, a professional caregiver will ensure your aging loved one is getting the best care possible – while giving you a much-needed break.

“At HCAN, we help families find the perfect balance between caring for their loved one and taking good care of themselves,” Goetz said. “From companionship to personal and dementia care, our trained, professional caregivers are committed to helping you meet the unique needs of your aging loved ones – while giving you peace of mind.”

To learn more about our customized care and respite plans, visit