Aisha Adkins is the Constituency Organizer for Caring Across Generations and Co-Executive Director of Love Labor Project. She has provided care for her parents off and on since 2006 but officially became a caregiver when her mother was diagnosed with dementia in 2013. Aisha joins How We Got Here to talk about her first exposure to caregiving at the age of seven and how the desire to help others has got her where she is today in both her caregiving and professional life. She revisits some of the moments in her caregiving journey that have taught her how to ask for help and how to advocate for her parents in various care settings. Aisha and Chris talk about how racial and gender identity inform and affect caregiving experiences. Aisha, in reflecting on a close personal loss, speaks about expectations versus reality when it come to memorializing the ones we love on the anniversaries of their deaths.
Aisha Adkins on caregiver compensation.
"The word 'caregiving' often evokes images of sitting next to the care recipient while they fall asleep to episodes of Perry Mason, occasionally waking them to feed them Jell-O. But caring for someone is work that can include everything from cooking, cleaning, laundry feeding, and bathing to administering life-saving medications, physically transferring a 200-pound person between a bed and a wheelchair, or staying up through the night with someone experiencing dementia-related psychosis....As mentally and physically exhausting as it can be to care for a loved one, most family caregivers do so without being compensated. And while a lot of caregivers find it an honor and a privilege to serve in this capacity, you can’t eat honor or pay the rent with privilege."
Aisha takes a look back at the first eight years of her caregiving journey and the decisions she made that affected her financial health as a young adult. She also shares why the time is now that caregiver compensation be addressed at the national level in There is value to what we do. It’s time policymakers recognize that.
Have you experienced financial strain as a result of caregiving?
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- To better understand the annual cost of your unpaid care work, check out our caregiver salary calculator.
Listen to the How We Got Here interview with Aisha Adkins.
Apple Podcasts http://i.care.ly/aisha-adkins-apple
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On the previous episode of How We Got Here, AARP caregiving expert Amy Goyer talks to us about caregiver financial stress and why the term informal caregiver has got to go.
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