6. They're caring for ailing parents, putting kids through college -- or both
Sandwich generation boomers are grappling with how to help aging parents who can't or don't want to stay in their homes, but want alternatives to hospital-like care facilities. Meanwhile, some boomers are tapping into retirement savings to pay for their children's college education
, which hit $26,273 for a year at a private school in 2009-2010, according to the College Board and SecondAct personal finance columnist Karin Price Mueller. That's up 4.4 percent from the previous year, slightly under the 6.5 percent increase in a year's worth of tuition and fees at a four-year public institution.