How to Talk to a Senior Parent about Future Plans

At some point, family caregivers may need to discuss sensitive or emotional topics with their senior loved ones. However, knowing the answers to questions and having a strategy in place could prevent legal battles and other issues in the long run. Below are tips your family can use when talking to your elderly loved one about future plans. 

Take Notes & Include All Caregivers

Scheduling the discussions ahead of time allows you to ensure all parties are involved, particularly your siblings and close family members as well as friends who assist with your loved one’s care. Including these individuals can lower the odds of bias and allow everyone to speak up about things they agree or disagree with about your loved one’s care or future plans. Your parent should be present as well. Break the discussion up into different topics, and take notes at each family meeting. Taking notes and recording the sessions can make future plans and conversations easier. 

Always Listen to Your Parent

Your loved one has the right to speak up when he or she feels uncomfortable about plans, particularly those that involve living arrangements, powers of attorney, care plans, and the type of professionals who provide your parent with assistance. Your parent may be more receptive to having assistance or moving in with you or another family member if you listen to his or her opinions and incorporate them into the care plan. Put your feelings aside, and remember your loved one’s wishes are the top priority. As long as your loved one’s health isn’t in jeopardy, he or she should have the ability to speak up without feeling guilty, ashamed, or ignored. One great way to introduce your parent to the idea of getting help is to try respite care for a few hours a day or a few days a week. For families living in Edmonton, respite care can be a wonderful solution when their aging loved ones need companionship and socialization. At Butterfly Dreams Respite Care, we thrive on helping seniors maintain their independence while receiving the support they need to enjoy a high quality of life.

Do Some Research

Most family caregivers accept the role with little or no experience in caregiving, and when it comes time for discussions, they don’t know where to begin. However, taking the time to learn as much as possible about your loved one’s health conditions and age-related problems that may impact him or her later in life will give you more insight into how to plan conversations and speak with more knowledge and certainty.You can conduct searches online or speak with your loved one’s medical providers for advice. Some seniors have caseworkers who can help with discussions and lead conversations for family caregivers. Caring for a senior loved one can be rewarding, but it can also be overwhelming for family caregivers who have other responsibilities they need to focus on. For these families, the perfect solution is a respite care home. Edmonton families rely on our caregivers whenever they need time to rest, work, run errands, and even go on vacation. 

Be Honest

Holding back information about your loved one’s health, finances, and other topics could result in losing your loved one’s trust. When speaking about plans with your parent, be honest and straightforward. You can ease the situation by using positive words and tones, but you should always tell the truth, regardless of how difficult the conversations may be. If your parent has incomplete knowledge about his or her health because you’re less than honest, your loved one could make choices that jeopardize his or her health and safety. Remaining honest with your loved one can strengthen the relationship and give him or her hope and the will to keep moving forward and make talking about future plans less stressful. Remind your loved one he or she isn’t alone. There are a variety of age-related health conditions that can make it more challenging for seniors to live independently. However, many of the challenges they face can be easier to manage if their families opt for professional care in an Edmonton respite home. You can rely on the expertly trained caregivers at Butterfly Dreams Respite Care to keep your loved one safe and comfortable. If you need professional respite care for your loved one, reach out to one of our Clinical Managers today at 780-242-2373.