Updated: Nov 14, 2022
WHAT IS SANDWICH GENERATION?
The term "sandwich generation" describes middle-aged people who are under pressure to care for both their aging parents and their developing children. The generation known as the "sandwich generation" earned its moniker because they are essentially "sandwiched" between the responsibility of caring for their aging parents—who may be ill, incapable of performing certain tasks, or in need of financial support—and their children, who need support on all fronts: material, emotional, and financial.
The phenomena of the sandwich generation has been influenced by trends of longer lifespans and having children later in life because there is more social acceptability of adult children living at home or visiting their parents, similar to boomerang children.
STUCK IN THE MIDST
Everybody has experienced being forced to choose between caring for young children and aging parents. However, it's not just stressful; it may also be financially, intellectually, and physically taxing.
Motherhood and I came up with the phrase "the sandwich years" to characterize the period in which we are all currently living. It's the transition from being a parent who works full-time to trying to additionally care for aging parents or young children.
MOMS OF THE SANDWICH GENERATION ARE FEELING THE PINCH
Mothers in the "sandwich generation," ages 35-54, feel greater stress than any other age group as they care for growing children and elderly parents, according to the American Psychological Association's 2007 Stress in America survey. Nearly two-in-five men and women in this age bracket feel overextended, but more women than men report high stress and inadequate stress management.
GET PROFESSIONAL ASSISTANCE:
Managing the challenges of providing care for two generations at once is not simple, but there are programs and organizations that are highly skilled at handling what may seem to be difficult issues.
Set time limits: There may be times when you feel like you have too much on your plate, so it's important to create healthy limits that may entail saying "no."