How to Take Care of Our Parents When They Reach Their Old Age
It is a fact of life, that some of us avoid to think or face reality, that one day our parents will grow old and cannot anymore take care of themselves from feeding themselves, or climbing stairs, or driving, and even how to change their clothes. This could be a dreadful thought for some of us, but we need to be ready to help our parents to make their last stages of their lives as comfortable and safe as possible, and for ourselves to be ready too. There are some matters to consider that will help you face the situation when your parents get old.
It is undeniable that most, if not all of us, do not want to think about the end of the lives of our parents, much less talk about it. In fact, having an in-depth discussion with parents about matters like living arrangements when they retire, inheritance, their long-term care, funeral wishes and so on, are not done by around 75% of children. Another reality is that not only the adult children are shunning away this very important issues, but also parents themselves like those with ages 50 and above who are still refusing to talk about these matters.
Considered as the most emotional and very important topic of discussion in a family, or as others would say the elephant in the room, this matter about parents reaching their old age has to be faced and tackled. Unfortunately, no matter how we dread the day to come, our parents will be fine today and the following day could need badly our care, so the more the family will prepare ahead of this situation, the lesser the family will be stressed out.
This kind of discussion with the family cannot be done just out of the blue, but rather, it is advisable to have a family meeting with your parents and siblings to prepare everybody with the conditions, from financial to feelings. It is very hard to talk about taking care and not having your parents in your life later, so when you arrange your meeting, have an agenda that is not very intensely worded, something like a talk about mom and dad’s needs and wishes as they get older, in that sort of wordings.
In order for you to be able to handle this kind of family meeting, sources are offering some tips for you to consider. First suggestion is for everybody in the family personally present during the meeting, not chatting or sending emails, so that you have an honest feedback from each one. Other tips would be to have everybody prepare their questions and thoughts in advance, give full attention to the family member talking during discussion, and make sure to write in a notebook the important matters and actions that the family agreed upon.