Do We Owe Our Parents?

I’ve just finished reading an interesting article, What Do We “Owe” Our Parents?, over on Next Avenue. In the September 12, 2013 online article author Suzanne Gerber discusses the motivations of adult children when it comes to aging parents and caregiving roles and describes a nationwide on-line survey conducted for More magazine, a publication aimed at mature women.

More info graphic

One small section of the info graphics. Read the description of the survey and see more info graphics in the magazine or visit the More website.

Intrigued by the Next Avenue article, an NBC Today Show interview about the survey, and More magazine’s brief on-line description (the full results will not be posted on-line until late October), I purchased the magazine. The most interesting survey result is that 81 percent of the 751 participating men and women say that they expect to help their parents when the time for helping out arrives.                            

The magazine article is worth taking time to read. The results, presented mostly via info graphics, describe adult children’s attitudes on topics that include:

    • What adult children will or won’t do for aging parents;
    • The sacrifices they are willing to make in order to care for aging parents; and
    • The differences in attitudes when race and ethnicity are considered.

Best Quote from the Magazine Article

There’s no prenup for eldercare, no contract in which we lay out clearly what tasks we are willing to do… We face the future not knowing what will be asked of us, assuming that because of love, duty, and moral obligation, we will do whatever we need to do…

My only criticism of the magazine’s presentation of the results is that readers deserve to learn more about how the questions were chosen and how the polling company went about its work — or at least more information than the two lines in tiny print at the bottom of page 121.

2 thoughts on “Do We Owe Our Parents?

  1. Great post..but let me introduce this book that I have read yesterday. There is a wonderful book called: A Bittersweet Season Caring for our aging parents and ourselves. By Janet Gross It was very helpful to provide some insights from someone who has been there.


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