The care of elders among Asian Americans carries with it attitudes, beliefs, and practices that can be starkly different from those of the general population. Many are immigrants who struggle adjusting to a new environment and the acculturated lifestyle of their children. How can their friends, loved ones, and healthcare providers give the kind of care that respects their traditional cultures while meeting their most basic needs?
This is a caregiving story that presents the challenges and hopes of an Asian American couple and their battle with Alzheimer's Disease. They share their immigrant story and the sacrifices, fears, and hopes in enduring Alzheimer's Disease together.
"We treated him like he was one of us. We didn’t treat him like a special person. We conversed with him. Eventually, we got used to each other. Three months after we started to care for him, my brother hugged him and he hugged my brother back. Now we all just hug each other."
More than half of all seniors aged 75+ in the United States live alone. Living in isolation without strong support significantly raises the risk of injury and illness. Seniors in the Asian American Pacific Islander community are especially vulnerable, often facing the added burdens of poverty and language barriers.