Examining caregiving issues from a multigenerational, family life cycle perspective, this volume deals with the broad spectrum of chronic illnesses that necessitate family caregiving throughout the lifespan and discusses responses to these challenges by both caregiving families and caregiving systems. Part One addresses the caregiving paradigm and the relationship of family caregiving research to family life studies. Part Two examines conceptual aspects of caregiving, ranging from the expansion of the caregiving paradigm, caregiving processes and tasks, to the positive aspects of caregiving. Part Three emphasizes how family caregivers are affected by the connection (or lack of it) to macro-level systems.
Chapter 14: Relationships between the Frail Elderly's Informal and Formal Helpers
Relationships between the Frail Elderly's Informal and Formal Helpers
Gerontologists have had a long-standing interest in the elderly's social relationships and social support, particularly their integration in the family system and intergenerational exchanges. With the increasing number of chronically disabled aged, a substantial amount of recent gerontological research has focused on vulnerable or frail elderly and their use of assistance. Much of this research is confined to care by immediate family members (spouses and adult children), leading some to argue that caregiving research is characterized by an “ideology of intimacy” (Krause, 1990; Lee, 1985). This restricted focus detracts from the importance of other informal helpers, such as siblings, friends, and neighbors, and of formal ...