As your loved one ages, you may start to notice their need for extra help in their home. This can be a difficult question to broach and unfortunately we don’t always handle it well. This video will help guide your conversation to result in a better discussion on accepting help in the home. We are here to help, call or email us to discuss your home care needs at firstname.lastname@example.org or 256.414.6090.
- Start the conversation early and have it often. This may sound odd, why would you have the conversation before your parent or aging loved one needs help in their home. But the earlier you talk about it and the more often you have the conversation, the more you will learn about what your loved one’s ultimate goals and wishes truly are. Having this conversation can be difficult but once we break past the awkward and start talking about aging little by little, it will become easier. Then when the time comes to introduce help in the home, you can reference some of the previous conversations from seeds that were already planted.
- Come from a place of love. Try hard not to make accusing statements or belittle your parent or aging loved one. Use “I” statements so they can hear your concern and how it makes you feel rather than “you” statements. Instead of saying, “You, can’t live alone,” try “I really worry about you being in the house all by yourself.”
- Have the conversation in person if you are able. I know that face to face conversations can be intimidating at times, but sensitive conersations should be had face to face or at least over the phone. You can prepare notes or write out specific things you want to be sure to say, but have the conversation face to face and not on paper or over text.
- Listen to what they say. Losing your independence is one of the greatest fears people have so it’s important that you acknowledge their feelings, and speak to their fears. The goal should always be to support their independence as much as possible, and they need to hear you say you understand that.
- Work the problem together. The roles have not reversed. You are not the parent and they are not the child. Allow them to keep their dignity and the respect they have earned. You will make more progress coming alongside them, supporting and guiding them, than you will taking charge and ordering people around.
- And finally, start small. Its so much easier to slowly introduce help for a few hours a day than having someone in the home 24/7. Ease into it if you can. Build a relationship with a trusted care agency so if or when they do need extended care or help, its not such a huge change.