Passages in Caregiving: Turning Chaos into Confidence

( 17 )

Overview

No one really expects it, but at some time or another, just about everyone has been—or will be—responsible for giving care for a sustained period to someone close to them. Gail Sheehy, who has chronicled every major turning point for modern Americans, knows firsthand the trials, fears, and rare joys of caregiving. Now she takes you by the hand and shows you that you will get through this—and you will do the right things.

With empathy and intelligence, backed by formidable ...

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Overview

No one really expects it, but at some time or another, just about everyone has been—or will be—responsible for giving care for a sustained period to someone close to them. Gail Sheehy, who has chronicled every major turning point for modern Americans, knows firsthand the trials, fears, and rare joys of caregiving. Now she takes you by the hand and shows you that you will get through this—and you will do the right things.

With empathy and intelligence, backed by formidable research, and interspersed with poignant stories of her experience and that of other successful caregivers, Passages in Caregiving examines the arc of caregiving from the very first signs of trouble—providing invaluable advice and guidance to help turn a stressful, life-altering situation into a journey that can be safely navigated and from which everyone can benefit.

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Editorial Reviews

Rosalynn Carter
“As a longtime champion for family caregivers, I am delighted that Gail Sheehy has brought this passage vividly to life from her own long experience and that of many others’. This is one of those rare books that can drastically lighten even the heaviest of loads.”
Gary Small
“I expect Passages in Caregiving to be the manual for caregivers for generations to come. Gail Sheehy has addressed every possible situation in an engaging, timely, and easy-to-follow manner.”
Hugh Delehanty
“In this insightful book that combines a moving firsthand account of her own journey and valuable strategies for navigating the labyrinth of care-giving, Gail Sheehy takes the mystery out of what can be a baffling, heart-rending experience. A must-read for anyone who gets the Call.”
Judith Orloff
“No longer will you have to blindly navigate the murky corridors of caregiving. You have an easy-to-read roadmap right here.”
Robert N. Butler
“More and more people are left to deal with late stage healthcare on their own. Gail Sheehy’s masterfully researched and written book comes at a perfect time, when people need it most.”
Bill Moyers
“Trust me: there is no better guide to caregiving.”
Publishers Weekly
Starred Review.

Like the 44 million other Americans caring for an ill or elderly person in their homes, prolific writer Sheehy looked after her late husband Clay Felker while he battled cancer for more than a decade. Having already chronicled almost every stage in baby boomer life (most notably in 1976's Passages), Sheehy offers an empathetic, well-researched guide to an unfamiliar, often scary role to which boomers are being initiated, outlining eight stages of caregiving from "Shock and Mobilization" to "The Long Good-Bye." Along with doctors and nurses, home caregivers have become the backbone of the (admittedly broken) U.S. health-care system, and an increasingly important part of a patient's decision-making team. As such, Sheehy contends, caregivers are in desperate need of knowledge and support, and this resourceful manifesto provides it, including practical steps to take, strategies for each point of care, likely obstacles for both patient and caregiver, and a lucid explanation of what's to come: "My intention is to illuminate the challenges and rewards inherent in the caregiving passage-to identify universal patterns in the chaos and give the journey a form that makes sense." Sheehy achieves her goal ably, providing a steady beacon during a time of great sadness and overwhelming responsibility.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780061661211
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 5/24/2011
  • Pages: 416
  • Sales rank: 130,890
  • Product dimensions: 5.22 (w) x 7.98 (h) x 0.98 (d)

Meet the Author

Gail  Sheehy

Gail Sheehy is the author of sixteen books, including the groundbreaking Passages, and a leading advocate for Americans age fifty and older. A contributing editor to Vanity Fair since 1984, she won the Washington Journalism Review Award for Best Magazine Writer in America and is a seven-time recipient of the New York Newswomen's Club Front Page Award for distinguished journalism. She lives in New York City.

Biography

Bestselling author and cultural observer Gail Sheehy has changed the way millions of people throughout the world look at their lives. Her original landmark work, Passages, made history, remaining on The New York Times bestseller list for more than three years and appearing in 28 languages. A Library of Congress survey named Passages one of the ten most influential books of our time.

In other recent bestsellers, New Passages and Understanding Men's Passages, Sheehy revisited the stages of adult life and mapped out a completely new frontier -- Second Adulthood. In The Silent Passage, Sheehy broke the taboo surrounding menopause and opened a dialogue vital to maturing women's health. The book presents a common-sense approach for managing the 20-year transition from early peri-menopause to the lengthened stage of post-menopause. She culminated a decade of Hillary-observing with the biography, Hillary's Choice, soon to be a two hour movie on A&E. Exploring the life of one of the nation's most intriguing women, Sheehy raises fundamental questions for every woman juggling career, family and personal ambition.

Sheehy's next book will be about a whole new universe of lusty, liberated women over 50 and their experiences in sex, love, dating, new dreams, marriage, and remarriage. It will be published by Random House in early 2006.

A graduate of the University of Vermont, Sheehy received a graduate fellowship to Columbia University where she studied under anthropologist Margaret Mead, who became her mentor. As a literary journalist, she was one of the original contributors to New York magazine. A contributing editor to Vanity Fair since 1984, she won the Washington Journalism Review Award for Best Magazine Writer in America for her in-depth character portraits of national and world leaders.

Sheehy is a seven-time recipient of the New York Newswomen's Club Front Page Award for distinguished journalism, most recently for her 2001 Vanity Fair article "September Widows." The American Psychological Association recently presented a presidential citation to Sheehy for "her unique ability to combine journalism and psychology." Other honors include the National Magazine Award, the Penny-Missouri Journalism Award and the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award in Race Relations (which she earned for her book, Spirit of Survival). She is one of the founders of the Women's Commission for Refugee Women and Children, and recently launched a Writing Scholars Community for re-entry students at the University of California, Berkeley. For more information on Sheehy, please visit her website: www.gailsheehy.com.

Sheehy resides in New York and California.

Biography courtsy of the author's official web site.

Good To Know

Sheehy is the mother of two daughters: Maura, a psychologist and writer, and Mohm, an artist and art therapist.

Some of her favorite activities include writing plays, playing with her grandson Declan, and traveling with her husband, Clay Felker, professor at the Felker Magazine Center at the Graduate School of Journalism at UC Berkeley.

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    1. Hometown:
      New York City and Berkeley, California
    1. Date of Birth:
      November 27, 1937
    1. Education:
      B.A., University of Vermont; M.A., Columbia School of Journalism

Customer Reviews

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( 17 )
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Sort by: Showing 1 – 16 of 17 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 14, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    The "Parade Magazine" article about the book is better

    I found this book irritating. It is, at best, a glimpse into a wealthy celebrity's journey as a caregiver, interspersed with current contacts for resources. The overriding message is, you need to have help if you are a caregiver. Some of the ideas and resources may be helpful. However, as the primary caregiver for my 93-year-old mother with dementia, and not living in a large city with an abundance of resources or relatives, the book seemed formulaic and opportunistic for a prolific writer, and did not reach my angst. In fact, it proved more of a problem to read about someone who was able to take her loved one on a trip to France; own homes in New York City, Long Island, and Berkeley; have private housekeepers, massage therapists and yoga instructors; and have access to very specialized care because of social contacts and the means to pay for everything. Easy for her to recommend that I take a single day or weekend for myself each month and have a week's vacation within six months! The "passages" of caregiving seem to relate best to the author's personal experience and not ones which all of us go through.

    7 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 30, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Very Helpful!

    I wish I'd had this book when I began caring for my elderly parents--would have saved me a fortune in Kleenex! Packed with information caregivers need, and presented in an easy to understand way. I have always enjoyed Gail's books and this is another success. --Jacqueline Marcell, Author 'Elder Rage', International Speaker on Eldercare & Alzheimer's, Host 'Coping With Caregiving' Internet Radio Show at wsRadio

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 25, 2013

    I Highly Recommend This Book To Any and All Caregivers

    A great self-journey through the Medical/Social Maze of Home & Institutional Healthcare for the terminally ill client and the Primary Caregiver. Even the 5-Star rating does not really give it justice as it is off the scale higher than 5-start. I am employed as a Hospice R.N. and I recommend this book to any of my Primary Caregivers who could benefit from this book which is most if not all of the caregivers and family, significant others and friends of the client.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 15, 2011

    Highly Recommended

    I am a caregiver for my husband who has had a stroke. I found this book extremely helpful. Lots of good info and reference materials. We are not walking this road alone!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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    Posted July 27, 2010

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