29.2 million people in the United States, most of them women, act as family caregivers while also holding down a paying job. U.S. social policy is notoriously unsupportive of family caregivers. As a result, families struggling to balance caregiving and paid employment face emotional, social, and financial stress, with especially severe negative impacts for women. This brief uses a nationally representative sample of family caregivers participating the National Family Caregiver Support Program (NFCSP) to describe gender differences in how providing care to a family member impacts caregivers’ employment experiences. Findings suggest that women are more likely than men to provide unpaid care to older family members and report significantly higher rates of negative employment impacts because of caregiving responsibilities.

Document Type

Research Brief


Caregiving, Gender Disparities


Family, Life Course, and Society | Sociology






The author thanks Shannon Monnat and Nicole Replogle for edits and feedback on a previous version of this brief.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.