While ageing is inevitable, you may not have expected the impact this change would have you and your family. Our caregivers at Seniors Helping Seniors know how difficult this transition might be and we are here to help understand what to expect when your parents as they advance in years.
Remember, it is understandable and normal for the nature of this topic to be difficult. Not many individuals can comfortably discuss the end of their parent’s years. However, our compassionate caregivers are here to encourage you to have those in-depth discussions with your elderly parent. In the end, we all want to be sure their needs and wishes are being properly met by following these steps.
- Gather your family for “The Talk”- This is going to be a heavy, thorough conversation that covers your parent’s and your families needs. The purpose of this talk is to establish a plan and prepare your whole family for the changes that are coming. We do not recommend bringing up this conversation on a whim or over a holiday gathering. This is one of the most important talks you will have with a family member, so this is best done as a separate occasion. This designated appointment will also give each person time to prepare their questions or concerns and determine what they need for their emotional health. This is the time to be open, honest, and direct. It’s probably best to bring a box of tissues with you.
- Be sure to discuss finances - Money is the root of making sure all needs are being met. Discuss everything from debts, assets, and comprehensive monthly and yearly budgets. At this time, it is best to bring up what additional expenses may be needed to adequately give your loved one the care they need moving forward.
Differentiate between needs and wishes- While discussing finances and individual necessities and desires, it is crucial to prioritize your loved one's basic needs. Just like most budgets and plans, you will need to be strict. On the other side of the spectrum, this is also an incredibly emotional time for most. It is also equally important to balance needs and wants. You cannot have a truly healthy person void of emotional stability.
During the discussion, find out what your loved one’s wishes are for life, burial, and other arrangements.
- Have a thorough discussion about mental, emotional, and physical health- You and your family need to observe your parent’s current health and ability to live independently. If you see signs that your loved one can no longer properly feed, bathe, perform daily tasks, keep up with household cleaning, transport themselves, and maintain a balanced daily life, an in-home caregiver can fill in these gaps.
- Discuss independence- Seniors Helping Seniors understands your parent's need to maintain independent living. While they may not be able to perform certain daily tasks anymore, that doesn't mean that they no longer have preferences or desires. We know how to adequately balance in-home care with your loved one’s daily wishes.
- Gather documentation- This time in life also calls for an extensive needs for paperwork and documentation. Each individual will be different, but these papers cover everything from wills, assets, debts, billing statements, house and vehicle titles, medical records, prescriptions, and other pertinent information.
- Take care of your needs, too - It is nearly impossible to adequately care for another if you are not taking care of your needs. This is an emotionally trying time for your elderly loved one, your family, and yourself. Take care of yourself so you can continue to care for others.
- Be a listener- Lastly, the most important thing to remember is to listen to what your loved one needs and wants. There are a mu
ltitude of complications, feelings, and frustrations that can take away from doing what is most important--making sure your loved one is cared for.
Our in-home caregivers are here to support you and your family. Please do not hesitate to get in touch with our team today to discuss your individualized care plan.