In 2011 Adrienne Glusman’s life was uprooted in an instant. The year before, her mom (Hetty) had been diagnosed with Multiple System Atrophy. While hearing this diagnosis was scary, the reality of her first serious health incident brought on a new level of fear and uncertainty & launched her into the role of a Millennial Caregiver at 29. As an only child of divorced parents, Adrienne knew caregiving would be bestowed on her one day, but she always imagined it would happen later in life – when she had a partner and family support system of her own. Now she felt like she was living a double life – this balancing act, where one minute she was living it up with friends, and the next doing research or making phone calls, booking 1-way plane tickets home to help, or hardest of all, having to make executive decisions for the wellbeing of her mom. Everything from life alerts, home healthcare agencies, managing finances & long term care insurance policies to assistive devices, senior living, med management, etc. The caregiving roles had come full circle – she was now a mother to her mom.
Adrienne moved back to Florida to care for her mom in 2015 and up until now, was of the mindset that becoming a caregiver at such a young age was happening “to”, not “for” her. It was not until she did a lot of personal development work over the past few years and finally began identifying as a caregiver (rather than just a “good daughter”) that she found passion and purpose in her journey. Adrienne’s mission is to educate, inform and advocate on behalf of the more than 10 million millennial caregivers, a subset of the caregiver population that is the fastest growing yet most under shadowed. Through professionally speaking at conferences on the topic of Millennial Caregiving, creating community via her social media platform on Instagram and Facebook, @journeyedcaregiver and raising visibility on the topic via various media outlets including the Wall Street Journal & Health Magazine, she has started to pave the way for her peers to be seen, heard and supported.
Adrienne joins us to talk about her caregiving journey with her mom and highlight the unique path she has taken and challenges she has faced caregiving at a much younger age.