Why am I writing about this? I’ve been there— and it was a bumpy ride...

A glimpse of some of the book’s stories and insights, each with something to tell us about ourselves.

Advice on Sibling and Family Dynamics

Organizations and websites where a family caregiver or siblings can get help.
















They're Your Parents, Too! How Siblings Can Survive Their Parent' Aging Without Driving Each Other Crazy - by Francine Russo   Amazon | Borders | Barnes & Noble
       Random House | Indie Bound

“...a stunning book about one of the most complex but ignored times of human transition... unique in the field of close relationships…"


Pauline Boss,  Author, Ambiguous Loss (Harvard University Press) 

"...Not to be missed ...More than a how-to book, this groundbreaking work illuminates a difficult stage of life..."

 Library Journal  

Francine answers questions about her new book.





« Need a good laugh? Rush to see this play—about one family (just like yours) going (hilariously) at each other over a dying parent | Main | That’s me “WOMANING UP” again with my parents. What about my BROTHERS? »

A WOMAN WALKS INTO A BAR…. How Companies Can Help Aging Seniors, Boomer Caregivers, and Their Siblings Deal with a New Family Passage

 A woman walks into a bar—after work.

True story. …well… except for the part about the bar.

She needs a drink…bad! But, instead of lifting a glass or three, she goes home and calls me, a consultant on family dynamics in the multi-generational Boomer/Senior family.

“I’m desperate,” she says. “Every day after work I go to my Mom’s and help her out, and I have to spend the night because my own house isn’t close enough. My job is so demanding that I’m overwhelmed. I’m stressed and can’t focus. Some days it’s all I can do to drag myself into work. My mom won’t let me hire anyone; she only want me. And my brother is useless. I feel totally on my own!

This woman, whom I’ll call Julie, is just at the start of what will be a long journey in which she will confront not only huge emotional and practical issues around eldercare but dilemmas over finances, legal powers and much, much more.

Julie is your prospective client. She is one of the 44 million people in this country taking care of a parent or older relative. That number, growing larger every day, presents huge opportunities for companies that serve the Boomer/Senior populations.

In researching my book, They're Your Parents, Too! How Siblings Can Survive Their Parents' Aging, I identified a family passage that's new for Boomer children and the seniors who are their parents.  It comprises a period of up to a decade in which adult children, their siblings, and their parents have to interact intimately and intensely and make decisions together about how to meet the needs of the aging parents—in ways that will also work for the adult children and their siblings

FAMILIES HAVE NO MODEL for how to do this: They are desperate for guidance on how to interact with each other and to make decisions in many areas:

            °ELDERCARE... including

                        Home Health Aides

                        Senior Living Options

                        Technology, Home adaptations and many other areas


            ° MEDICAL  DECISIONS, including

                        Choices of drugs and devices

                        End of Life treatment



Who should have a parent’s legal powers when the need arises—and  how those powers should                          be  used 

                        Estate planning and inheritance issues

For companies in the aging arena, these family dilemmas present opportunities to present themselves as having this desperately needed expertise. I like to help them reframe these family conversations in constructive and productive ways that also position these companies as thought leaders.

The need is desperate. The prospects for addressing it are huge.








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Reader Comments (2)

We are excited to have Francine Russo tell us about "Reaching Boomers, Seniors and Caregivers through Social Media" at the Eighth Annual What’s Next Boomer Business Summit on Fri. April 29, 2011
in San Francisco. Here session is about Boomers embracing new media yet still the largest demographic for maintaining traditional print, radio, and TV. If they are accessible through a mix of marketing and advertising strategies, what is the right mix? Attendees will learn how to maximize your impact by integrating social media strategies that work. Here session is at 3:15 p.m. To learn more about the session and the What's Next Boomer Business Summit, visit: www.boomersummit.com

This situation is one that we have encountered time and time again. Your parents raised you and took care of you. You want to do the same for them as they get older. Sometimes the children feel as if they are failing the parent no matter how much care they are able to provide. There is no shame in getting help from professionals. That help could come from a therapist who can help organize the family to set long term goals. Once they have talked it through, they may decide that it would be better for their parents to live in an assisted living facility where all of their day to day needs can be met by highly trained professionals. You love your parents and anything that you can do for them is the right decision.

August 22, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterBJ

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