Siblings as Primary Caregivers: A Sisters' Story

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Nearly 4.5 million people in the United States have developmental disabilities, and more so than ever, these individuals are living longer lives. With a death of a parent, siblings often take over as the primary caregivers for those with mental disabilities. The HBO documentary, "Raising Renee" follows the journey of Beverly McIver, an artist who is put to the test in raising her sister who is mentally disabled. 

Steven Ascher and Jeanne Jordan are the husband-and-wife team and directors of the documentary “Raising Renee.” Beverly McIver is an artist and the subject of the documentary.


Steven Ascher, Jeanne Jordan and Beverly McIver

Produced by:

Arwa Gunja

Comments [2]


I am eager to see this film. I,too, have been caring for my older brother who has Down's Syndrome, for the past 18 years. It has become even more challenging as Alzheimer's has set in as well. Having no other living family members for support, it has been a difficult undertaking, especially now that I am getting older.

Thank you for bringing this to the screen, Stephen and Jeanne.

Feb. 18 2012 10:35 AM
Steve Hersch from Kenmore, WA

She began leaving with the first cycle of chemo drugs. Slowly, incrementally. That morning an infusion tube had been inserted just above Ruby's right breast snaking higher towards her neck for a convenient vein. Back in the infusion room Gerry, one of the chemo nurses, told Ruby, no sex for a week. That's no fun, she said. It was no fun. The fun ceased in that room. What our sons and i began to learn that day and have repelled at learning three years hence is that mild dementia coupled with cancer treatment leads inevitably to accelerated incoherence. Scraps of her essence were flushed daily, inexorably in the bowl's wet spiral to the sewers of slow death.

Feb. 17 2012 11:30 AM

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