David Stanley Has Built a Business Helping the Sandwich Generation
by Tricia White | Managing Editor
The following is an interview with David Stanley, Founder of Custom Caregivers.
GLF: Tell us why you started Custom Caregivers.
David: My father died in 1989. He was only 65 years old. He had severe heart disease and feared being dependent on others for his care. He had all of his advanced directives in place. When he went into cardiac arrest one night, lack of oxygen to his brain caused him to stroke. His worst nightmare was coming true. We, as a family, were faced with holding on to our dear father or honoring his unwavering wishes. The decision to cease all life sustaining measures was heart wrenching but not difficult. We were carrying out the wishes of a proud and decisive man.
In 2011, I had the opportunity to provide service to elders and their families who were at their own stage of a very similar process. Caring for the people that we love is about listening to what they want and trying to honor their wishes the best that we can. Although I have run several businesses, this is the most gratifying work that I have ever done.
GLF: What makes your service unique?
David: At Custom Caregivers, we realize that people rarely make plans for care before a disaster or significant event has happened. When people need care, they need it now, not tomorrow or next week. We are the most responsive to the immediate and ongoing needs of the clients we serve. We also never miss an assignment. If our client needs us, we are there.
GLF: Tell us about the people who work for you…their training…their compassion, etc.
David: Caregiving is for people that have the passion for putting the needs of the elderly above anything else. The number one job requirement is to have a caring and loving heart. They also need to have the skills, training and experience to care for the clients.
GLF: Tell us an example of how you help families who are coping with aging parents – those of us in the sandwich generation who are trying to raise our kids/work/have a ‘life’ and still care for our own aging parents.
David: Although each situation is different, our job is to convince those aging parents to accept care, to continually reassess the situation and to move more of the care from the primary caregivers (family members) to professional caregivers (us).
GLF: What is your advice for a sandwich generation parent who is stressed and burdened with guilt and angst when coping with an aging parent who is often cranky and angry?
David: It is hard to not take criticism personally when it comes from parents who have raised us and given so much. The truth is that we can only do what we can do. We are not super heroes. We have limited resources and time but boundless love.
If you have any questions or thoughts about navigating the challenges of aging parents or being part of the Sandwich Generation, we want to hear from you. Email Tricia@GoodLifeFamilyMAG.com.