Rosalynn Carter

A looming crisis in caregiving [Commentary]

My stay-at-home mom cared for her father for nearly two years until his increasing dementia and the demands of a young family became too much for her. Fortunately, there was a plain, clean, affordable facility staffed by kind souls nearby.

My turn at caregiving came when my dad was diagnosed with bone cancer. Our retired stepmother was Dad's primary caregiver, but my brother and I tag-teamed caregiving support; during the last six weeks, one or the other of us went every day. It was tough. At one point, my brother phoned to say he thought Dad's illness was taking him, too.

Yet we were lucky. Together, we had enough social support and wherewithal to do what Dad needed. Even so,...