However, parents are not immune to having financial difficulties. Sometimes these difficulties are due to circumstances vs choices (ie. illness, loss of employment, eroded investments due to poor economy). Difficulties can also be a result of the parents making poor choices and living an irresponsible lifestyle that they cannot afford. This is not an easy situation for their adult children to deal with. It is especially difficult if the adult children are successful adults and are making responsible financial choices for themselves and their own family. An adult child's response to their parent's request for financial help requires careful thought and consideration. Depending on circumstances, adult children may need to avoid entanglement in their parent's drama. It is important to know the difference between enabling and helping when deciding how to respond.
Below are a few interesting links that discuss destructive baby boomer debt resulting from irresponsibility and frivolous purchases. They offer helpful advice for those adult children that are caught in the middle (feeling guilty, wanting to help but not wanting to enable). It's worth a look, if not for your own situation, to share with others who may be struggling with this dilemma.