LGBT Caregiving in Baltimore County

February 27, 2019

LGBT Caregiving

Caregiving is usually not something that is on our bucket list of things that we want to do: caregiving just happens! 

Here is what author Christopher MacLellan says in What’s The Deal with Caregiving

LGBT family caregivers face unique challenges, generally they see their friends and community as family. LGBT caregivers make up 9% of the 34.2 million Americans caring for adults over age 50, an estimated 3 million people. LGBT people become caregivers at a higher rate than their non-LGBT peers; 1 in 5 LGBT people is providing care for another adult. LGBT older adults are 3-4 times less likelshutterstock_429969424.jpgy to have children and twice as likely to be single than their non-LGBT peers and may be estranged from their families of origin.  They often lack the support that others have from family members.  Instead they typically rely on families of choice for care (one’s created family unit made up of non-kin such as friends, partners, ex-partners, and community members.
As health care professionals we need to not only identify and treat the presenting condition but we need to accept and treat the patient as a whole person.  Taking time to understand relationships and caregiving can help to better support the patient and understand their whole needs. This can improve the outcomes for the caregiver and the care recipient.