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Scholars Day 2006, Wednesday, April 12

In Sickness and In Health: Elderly Men Who Care for Wives with Dementia

It is estimated that approximately 1,000,000 elderly men care for spouses with Alzheimer’s Disease or other forms of cognitive impairment, yet we know little of their experiences. What do men caregivers do and what meanings do they ascribe to their work? What role does gender play in out understanding of care work? What can we learn from their experiences? This qualitative study was based on in-depth, open-ended interviews with more than 49 men caregivers in Rochester, New York. Inductive data analysis reflected both success and struggle. Positive responses include feelings of commitment, responsibility and devotion. Less promising experiences of men caregivers include feelings of isolation and invisibility, difficulty adapting to the demands of domestic care work, and adverse impact on physical and emotional health.

Presenter: Richard Russell (Faculty)
Topic: Social Work
Location: 313 MetroCenter
Time: 6 pm (Session VI)