In this response to Ungerson we present evidence to support the respresentativeness of the sample and argue that the exclusion of 'minimal' carers from caregiving research is not justified. Ungerson's arguments for the consideration of large scale social processes are addressed by examining the role of gender as a determinant or moderator of care outcomes. No support was found for a model in which care work satisfaction mediated associations between gender and willingness to care. Nor did gender moderate associations between care work and appraised impact. Gender was found to moderate associations between two of the seven measures of care work and willingness to care. These findings suggest that the impact of care work on carers is not gender specific, but that women experiencing similar levels of negative impact as men may feel greater obligation to continue caring.