Journal of Social, Behavioral, and Health Sciences




Asian American family caregivers have gained increased attention due to the need to provide life-sustaining aid at home given the rising numbers of older adults. This article reflects upon caregiving-related research studies that have overlooked the circumstances Asian American caregivers bring to the home-care context. Policies written to address community needs tend to omit the social circumstances many Asian American caregivers must face when trying to take advantage of programs and services. For example, the eligibility requirements fail to recognize distinctive cultural values embedded within the caregiving processes. Further, most Asian American data is aggregated. Aggregating data by ethnicity limits an accurate portrayal of social circumstances. The health effects developed from caregiving demands tend to remain unaddressed and the distribution of goods and essential services generally does not reach many home-based Asian American caregivers in need. This text examines a within-group perspective to uncover sociocultural dimensions influencing caregiving. Different perspectives include those of government and community agencies, research institutions, and data-driven websites (e.g., U.S. Census Bureau). Role Strain Theory and Role Enhancement Theory are discussed. This article explores critical issues such as the health impacts of caregiving demands, Asian American identity conflicts, and United States caregiving policy’s lack of acknowledgment of Asian American diversity. To begin making corrections to misleading assumptions about Asian Americans and their culture, the article closes with how researchers need to accept the heterogeneity of Asian Americans and provide a foundation for culturally appropriate policies and programs that can enhance caregivers’ quality of life.