JOY JOHNSTON: Journalist, Author, Caregiver Advocate


The Reluctant Caregiver Reveals All

Joy Johnston was missing that caregiving gene. She was allergic to children and being around sick people filled her with dread. Joy was forced to face her greatest fears when her father developed dementia and just six months after his death, her mother was diagnosed with colon cancer. She reluctantly accepted the caregiving crown and embarked on a journey that included laughs, tears, and more bodily fluids than she ever imagined possible.

After experiencing the quiet desperation, isolation, and financial devastation that so many caregivers face, Joy is making it her life's work to advocate for better support of family and professional caregivers. Her latest project, Respite Care Share, is an organization dedicated to helping caregivers take a well-deserved break.

Joy is an experienced digital news editor who specializes in viral content that drives traffic and engages audiences. Her personal essay, The Bully and the Ghost, received an Honorable Mention in the 43rd New Millennium Awards for Nonfiction. Joy was the recipient of the 2015 Rick Bragg Prize for Nonfiction for her personal essay, Greetings from the Nursing Home. Her story, French Toast, was published in Chicken Soup for the Soul: Living with Alzheimer's and Other Dementias. Based in Atlanta, she lives with her partner, two bossy cats, and a goofy pit bull.

Joy's collection of irreverent essays on caregiving will be released in 2017. In the meantime, follow her blog, The Memories Project, and read her essays as a featured author on The Caregiver Space.

Joy was interviewed by the Huffington Post for an article about caregiving: When Loved Ones Die at Home, Family Caregivers Pay the Price.

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