Social Question

spittingblaze's avatar

I take care of my father without pay, is this considered being employed by someone?

Asked by spittingblaze (258points) December 24th, 2010

My mother and siblings work while I take care of my disabled father. I am sometimes critized for not having a life and I wonder at why this is. I have to bathe my father, help him around the house, cook for him, watch over him, keep the house clean and a variety of other things. I am asked to do this by two other people who live in the house. Is this considered a job or work? My dad was rendered disabled two years ago. He is somewhat of a man-child and very dependent upon me.

What does this make me? What is the proper word? My dad does not like the word babysitter. I guess I prefer the word caretaker over nurse. Would the reader consider this a job, work and an employment? I am just curious.

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12 Answers

spittingblaze's avatar

Maybe a better question would be am I inferior to those who have paying jobs, just because I am not traditionally employed? Or am I employed?

poisonedantidote's avatar

I would not consider it being employed. It is not a job, just like mother is not a job, just like wife is not a job. However, it is still a “full time job” if you catch my drift.

Basically, If you wanted to buy a house and get a loan, when the bank asks you what is your job, you would say you are unemployed. Officially, and technically, it is not a job. But that does not mean to say it is not just as hard.

As for a term to call your self. I would go with Son or Daughter (depending on your gender). The reason for this term, is if i wanted to describe to a friend of mine who takes care of your father, i would say “his son/daughter takes care of him”. Caretaker and nurse just sound too cold and formal to me, I like son or daughter more, it’s more descriptive, not so cold, and more empowering and less embarrassing for your father.

Seaofclouds's avatar

You aren’t employed per se since you are not receiving any income or paying any taxes. You are acting as a live in aide from the sounds of it. What you are doing to help your father and your family is a very good thing. If you weren’t doing those things, most likely your family would have to pay someone else to come in your house to take care of your dad while you were all out of the house during the day.

spittingblaze's avatar

Yeah dad might not like these terms, when describing to someone what I do all day I guess I could just say I am unemployed and take care of my father. When I say this to other people people when they ask what I do they tend to get judgmental. But then again I am probably far too insecure! Ha, ha.

Seaofclouds's avatar

As hard as it is sometimes, try not to worry about what other people think. You know what you are doing for your family and from the sound of it, you are happy to be doing it.

I personally think it’s very admirable when family members do their best to care for each other instead of putting a loved one in a nursing home. Yes, nursing homes are necessary at times, but it says a lot about people when they are willing to do what they can to keep their loved one home, in my opinion.

spittingblaze's avatar

Thank you. It is hard sometimes but for my sanity maybe it would be best not to care what other people think. I adore my dad and it seems to make my family’s life easier. You are right I am happy to be doing it.

world_hello's avatar

You might want to look into getting a check from the government. Ask at Social Security. They might say no but they might give you a check.

And you are a awesome person in my books and everyone that gives you shit can fuck off.

spittingblaze's avatar

I can get a check from the government for taking care of my dad? I did not know that. I cannot really work because taking care of dad takes up a lot of my time, not that he is not worth it. I might look into it, thank you for the idea, it is not extremely important but it is worth looking into.

That is kind of you. Thank you :)

world_hello's avatar

@spittingblaze – If your dad is deemed disabled by them, you can be paid for taking care of him. It might take a long time to actually get a check but it is something they do. It only takes a few hours to ask and apply so you might as well try.

spittingblaze's avatar

Well he is deemed disabled by doctors which would not be hard to give proof of their opinions and the tests they did. Your right I might as well try.

spittingblaze's avatar

Or the social insurance office but still.

Anemone's avatar

I’d say you are not employed, but if someone asks what you “do”, you could say you’re a full-time caretaker for your father. It’s not employment, but it’s a very important, admirable job. I don’t think you should feel inferior in any way, What you’re doing is far harder than what most people do for a living. I hope your family supports you, finaincially and emotionally, for what you’re doing.

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