Filial Piety, also known as The Paralytic, is a 1763 oil painting by French artist Jean-Baptiste Greuze. It depicts an aged, paralyzed man surrounded and cared for by his loving family and is part of a larger series on family morals. The painting’s message: A good family cares for their aging parents.

All of Marlene’s children live within an hour of her Michigan home, yet Sheila, who lives the closest and is the only daughter, ended up in charge of most of the work. When Sheila, who requested that her last name not be used, told her brothers that their mom wasn’t showering, for example, her younger brother said that he and his wife had noticed she smelled the last time they visited — but “they didn’t ask if I needed any help, or assist mom,” Sheila says. “They just went about their lives.”

Collaboration between siblings is vital when caring for an aging parent — and that can present a challenge for even the most solid of sibling relationships.

Even when there isn’t a pandemic, siblings may face numerous stumbling blocks when looking after an aging parent, from unequal division of caregiving tasks, to different perceptions of the parent’s needs, to denial over the parent’s condition. Old wounds and rivalries may reemerge, leading to arguments and resentments that affect care decisions.

Read more in Knowable Magazine.

Written by External Article
Everyone is talking about caregiving, but it can still be difficult to find meaningful information and real stories that go deep. We read (and listen to and watch and look at) the best content about caregiving and bring you a curated selection. Have a great story about caregiving? Use our contact form to submit it to us so we can share it with the community!

Related Articles

Sizing Up the Decisions of Older Adults

Sizing Up the Decisions of Older Adults

Adult Protective Services agencies in every state receive reports of possible neglect, self-neglect, abuse or exploitation of older people and other...

My Autistic Brother And I

My Autistic Brother And I

Being away from Casey after growing up with him for almost 20 years is difficult. I worry about him, and sometimes, the worry clouds the way I see...

Popular categories

Finances
Burnout
After Caregiving
Housing
Relationships
Finding Meaning
Planning
Dying
Finding Support
Work
Grief

Don't see what you're looking for? Search the library

Share your thoughts

0 Comments

Share your thoughts and experiences

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Join our communities

Whenever you want to talk, there’s always someone up in one of our Facebook communities.

These private Facebook groups are a space for support and encouragement — or getting it off your chest.

Join our newsletter

Thoughts on care work from Cori, our director, that hit your inbox each Monday morning (more-or-less).

There are no grand solutions, but there are countless little ways to make our lives better.

Share your insights

Caregivers have wisdom and experience to share. Researchers, product developers, and members of the media are eager to understand the nature of care work and make a difference.

We have a group specifically to connect you so we can bring about change.