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We all love our independence, and our aging parents are no different. But adult children may see that their parents could really benefit from some extra assistance and can be reluctant to raise the subject for fear of offending them. We don’t like to hear that we may be failing. We don’t want to think that our independence is fading away. In general, we just don’t like asking for help.
So how do you raise the subject without offending your parents? How can we also remove any feelings of guilt because we may feel it was our responsibility to look after our parents but due to circumstances and a variety of reasons that may not be possible? At a certain point, the pressure of the adult children’s own family and other commitments may mean it is time for the all for some help.
Your parents may resist having the conversation and avoid it at all costs, therefore it is important to choose the right time and place for the conversation. If you select a non-emotional location as the first step, the approach to the subject may not be so sensitive. It is probably best to avoid times of happiness like holidays or family celebrations and even your parent’s home. It may be better to head out for breakfast or dinner but somewhere away from distractions.
One of the best approaches is to ask questions and let the parents come up with the answer. Using this method, children can ask parents what they would do if they fell at home or if they could no longer perform household chores and daily activities.
It would pay to know some of your options in advance before the meeting rather than entering into a conversation without the answers. Get to know what services are available in your area and be ready with some recommendations for your parents. Reassure them that you are no leaving them and abandoning them but more adding some additional support in their time of need when you are away.
Make sure you dispel any thoughts about taking away a parent’s independence and steer the conversation to the benefits of home health care services, like Your Home Care.
Just a simple task like having the groceries delivered and a meal cooked takes a big burden of the children and allows them to come and visit rather than adding to their work load. With the extra freed up time, your parents may be encouraged to take up a new hobby or personal interest.
Your conversation to persuading your parents to get some help is not about an ego trip for the eldest child or the closest. Ultimately, the children can beg and plead with their parents, but in the absence of severe dementia or personal safety concerns, the decision to seek help will ultimately be a decision from your parents. They have a right to make the wrong decision but then allow them to experience that, especially when there is some resistance and agree to review the situation after a set period of time. At the review meeting, they may then see the benefits of asking for help.
If you find the conversation too emotional, we are happy to discuss and assist you in this area.