Cartoon encapsulates elder care
I admit it; I'm a diehard fan of the sweetly sentimental, but funny and true-to-life Canadian strip For Better or For Worse, and after my email it's the first thing I look at every day. (The other strip I look at is Zits, a not-too-exaggerated look at life with a 15-year-old boy.)
Have a look at today's strip (or click on Dec. 15, 2006 if you're looking at this after today). Backstory: the old man has had a stroke, and can't speak, and he's pretty unhappy about it; his wife, Iris, does all the talking for him and gives most of the care. The strip highlights three key issues: 1. Doctors throwing pills at depression, even when people (especially elders) are already taking a slew of other pills. 2. Caregiver burnout. 3. The need for human connection and support.
Apparently, in what will be a loss for the rest of us, For Better or For Worse cartoonist Lynn Johnston and her strip are going into retirement very soon.