The Stresses of Being a Caregiver

One study shows that caregiving takes a greater toll on retirees' mental health than on their finances.

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Readers of this column send me dozens of e-mails describing the inspiring things they are doing in retirement. Some of the most inspiring—and sobering—come from those of you who are acting as caregivers for a spouse, parent or other family member. “Both of my parents have had medical issues,” writes Edwin Diaz. “My father passed away during the pandemic, and my mother had to be taken care of. So although my wife and I are comfortable in retirement, this situation can alter plans completely.”

After she retired, Wendy Weill “had the time to help my mom move to assisted living, clear out her home and put it on the market,” says Weill. “This allowed me to spend time with her that I would never have had the opportunity to do.”

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Janet Bodnar

Janet Bodnar is editor-at-large of Kiplinger's Personal Finance, a position she assumed after retiring as editor of the magazine after eight years at the helm. She is a nationally recognized expert on the subjects of women and money, children's and family finances, and financial literacy. She is the author of two books, Money Smart Women and Raising Money Smart Kids. As editor-at-large, she writes two popular columns for Kiplinger, "Money Smart Women" and "Living in Retirement." Bodnar is a graduate of St. Bonaventure University and is a member of its Board of Trustees. She received her master's degree from Columbia University, where she was also a Knight-Bagehot Fellow in Business and Economics Journalism.