Last week, in Part I of Caregiving in San Diego: Daughterhood San Diego’s Second Anniversary, we celebrated the second anniversary of a ground-breaking new community for caregivers in San Diego: Daughterhood San Diego. This week, we’ll learn why the Daughterhood circle is special to those who belong.
Daughterhood as a concept and an organization dates to early 2015, when Anne Tumlinson, a Washington D.C.-based author, consultant, and aging expert, launched her website. Her experience with aging in the public, private and personal sectors inspired her to create a resource to help families care for loved ones that would be available nationally. Meanwhile, on the West Coast, Karen Van Dyke, Founder of Senior Care By Design, and Christine Lee, Founder and Director of Casa Companion Homecare Solutions, were thinking along the same lines. Karen and Christine had been working on the concept of a ‘real-life’ group for caregivers for months, not knowing that Anne had launched the Daughterhood.org website from Washington, D.C. around the same time. When a mutual connection brought all three together, and they realized that they had the same great idea, Daughterhood San Diego was born. As Christine said at the inaugural Daughterhood meeting in September 2015:
“About a year ago, Karen and I were in the process of getting something started for women in San Diego that had the same intention and purpose of Daughterhood, but we were going to call it by a different name. As professionals in the senior care industry, we were encountering questions and issues that we knew were universal to women who are caring for loved ones. We wanted to create a forum that would allow these women to discuss, share, and get answers, and find the support they needed. Caregiving tends to be a very isolating job, and we wanted to connect and collaborate to make the experience better. As Daughterhood’s mission paralleled what we wanted to do locally with our group in San Diego, we decided to partner up with Anne and offered to help her expand Daughterhood.org’s mission and business. We decided to rebrand and rename our initial efforts for the group we were planning, and decided to launch Daughterhood San Diego instead. After our first meeting on September 24th, 2015, Karen and I became the very first in the country to launch a Daughterhood group.”
The spirit of daughterhood resonates personally for both Karen and Christine, as it does for many women. Professionally, they both work every day with people of both genders who are in the thick of daughterhood. The daughterhood experience of caring for loved ones isn’t limited to women, of course, but the statistics show that more than 60% of caregivers are female. All three women’s mission is to create a resource and bolster for caregivers experiencing daughterhood as individuals, whose greatest strength and assistance may lie in encouraging and edifying one another. When joining forces, all agreed that Daughterhood would not be a traditional support group, but rather a virtual resource with the added benefit of in-person group meetings and camaraderie.
In addition to the ‘real-life’ groups, Daughterhood offers online sites and forums that offer both private community and public resources between meetings. The San Diego Daughterhood circle has both a public and a closed group on Facebook, where members can share thoughts, ask for referrals or recommendations, or start discussions on the themes of caregiving and daughterhood. Nationally, the Daughterhood.org website is a blog, a clearinghouse for resources, and a vital reality check for any caregiver who has ever wondered, “Am I the only one out here doing this?” Anyone who finds themselves in a caregiving role can take advantage of the circles’ resources, encouragement, and advocacy to help take care of their loved ones.
Daughterhood San Diego meets every other month, and you can find their events on their Facebook page. Anyone who finds themselves in a caregiving role is welcome to attend events, and participate in the Facebook community.