Her parents survived a bombing and an incarceration camp. Now she’s their caregiver. In San Jose’s Japantown, June Yasuhara learns more about her parents’ dementia daily

June Yasuhara, 55, suffered bouts of severe anxiety all her life. During a major episode, she couldn’t even mail a letter. “You don’t feel you are capable of anything,” she says. Worry about her parents’ health was always a major trigger. So when both her mother and father developed dementia, Yasuhara’s anxiety should have came […]

Caregiver stress and support

Family caregiving spans across all generations and communities, including, but not limited to baby boomers, Gen X, Gen Z, millennials, LGBTQ+ and the silent generation. According to AARP’s “2020 Report on Caregiving in the U.S.,” more than one in five Americans have cared for an adult or child with special needs at some time in […]

Let’s talk: About … Self care and caregiving

Sometime in our lives, most of us will be caregivers. For the most part, taking care of babies and children who are dependent on us, is a different experience from taking care of aging parents or ill spouses who are dependent on us. Having children and timing the responsibility for a certain stage of your […]

The spirit of serving the community

The annual Kimochi Spirit Awards, held at the Sundance Kabuki Cinemas in San Francisco’s Japantown May 16, featured an afternoon of recognition and music. Kimochi Inc., which provides culturally sensitive assistance to seniors and their caregivers, honored those who have supported the organization and the greater Japantown community. Kimochi presented its Associate Director Steve Ishii […]

Youth’s ‘smart’ invention helps elderly and their caregivers

  Two years ago, Kenneth Shinozuka’s grandfather began wandering at night, resulting in accidents. Shinozuka witnessed his aunt struggling to stay up at night to watch over her father, who has Alzheimer’s disease. The 16-year-old Shin-Nisei realized that his family is far from alone. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, some 5.2 million people suffer from […]

Let’s Talk: About cancer (Part II)

In the last column, I wrote about “Coping with cancer” and invited readers to share with me ways they have found to cope with cancer. Although I received a few ideas on the topic, I was struck by a question that seemed important to address. “What if I’m not coping at all?” This person went […]

Let’s talk: About coping with cancer

The big “C” word. There was a time in the past when talking about cancer, even mentioning the word was taboo. People would often go into seclusion and cope with the illness alone or in the privacy of the family circle. Today, cancer is ubiquitous. I don’t know anybody that hasn’t been touched by this […]

CAUGHT IN THE MIDDLE: Senior service organizations help sandwich generation care for aging parents

In the United States, the typical caregiver is a 48-year-old woman providing care for a relative, according to a 2009 report by the American Association of Retired Persons. The report states that 31.2 percent of U.S. households have had at least one person serve as an unpaid caregiver within a year. The “sandwich generation,” adult […]

Chinatown death triggers worries about isolated elders

A tragedy happened in San Francisco’s Chinatown in mid-April. Yee-Shui Mar, age 91, fell from a window in her apartment building. The Chinese-language newspaper Sing Tao Daily reported that Mar, who was from Taishan City in Guangdong province, lived alone. She had a married daughter and grandchildren living elsewhere. Mar’s neighbors told Sing Tao that […]

HEALTHY AGING: Senior services for Japanese Americans in California

The Nikkei community is aging, and as Sansei and even Yonsei enter their 60s, aging issues have become all the more urgent. California, with its high concentration of Japanese Americans, has numerous services and entities dedicated to aiding aging seniors through the concept of “Healthy Aging.” The Administration on Aging (AOA), a part of the […]

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