The Sandwich Generation: Are You Overwhelmed with Guilt?

There is a reason the boomer generation is called the Sandwich Generation. We are caring for our kids for a longer period of time and now we have our aging parents also! We are literally squished between two generations and feeling like something’s got to give … but what? There is no easy answer to this question. However, there are questions to ask yourself and things to do for yourself that may help you deal with feeling sandwiched.

I do not suggest there is one or even any easy answer to this question, but here are some ideas and questions to ask yourself (and your spouse) that may help you clear out some of the confusion.

Ask questions to deal with overwhelm and guilt

Ask these questions and answer them honestly. Communication is key here.

  1. Have you and your spouse asked how each of you is feeling about your kids and your aging parents? If you don’t have a spouse, ask yourself, “How do I REALLY feel about my kids and my aging parents? Am I sad, angry and/or scared?”
  1. Have you planned for your own retirement? In other words, are you taking care of yourself and your future or have you let your own retirement plans go by the wayside?

Make a list of options to deal with overwhelm and guilt

Make a list of all the options and scenarios that you have available to you. List any and every idea that comes to mind. Here are a few:

  • Have the kids live with us.
  • Have mom live with us.
  • Move mom closer to us.
  • Pay for all or part of the kids living arrangements.
  • Pay for all or part of mom’s living arrangements.
  • Ask some one else to help with the financial burden of mom.
  • Have a third party visit mom daily/weekly.
  • Tell the kids they are on their own financially.
  • Be a moral and physical support for mom, but not financial.

If finances are not an issue, the answers may come to you more easily. Most of us do not have the financial resources to enable us to comfortably support family members indefinitely.

Sandwich Generation, find solutions that work

If your kids are adults, it may be time for them to take care of themselves. Helping them achieve physical and financial independence is crucial for both them and you. Your parents may not have planned for or been able to plan for their future as they should have. Although you want to help, it may not be the right decision if helping means forsaking your own future financial planning. You may look forward to helping your own kids so they don’t have the feelings of being sandwiched. Loving someone does not always mean you have to pay for and support them financially.

The burden and stress you are feeling from this will take it’s toll on your health, your attitude, your marriage, not to mention your bank account, over time. Don’t let it get out of hand. Communicate with those you love, find solutions that work for you, and enjoy your family!

Are you part of the Sandwich Generation? Are your plans for retirement going by the wayside? If you need help dealing with overwhelm and guilt caused by the feelings of being sandwiched, call Presto Real Estate Servies at (800) 495-1120 or email We can answer your questions or direct you to the perfect professional who will.

Visit for information and answers about the Sandwich Generation on the lighter side.

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