When you were young, you thought your parents would live forever. They were an incredibly powerful and influential force in your life, who shaped you into the adult you are today. But as you grow up, you have to learn to accept your parents’ mortality and embrace the fact that one day they will not be around anymore.
There comes a point in life when you realize your parents need you more than you need them. As they get older, they may find it harder to carry out the tasks they used to perform with ease. Simple day-to-day errands like going to the supermarket, mowing the lawn, or hoovering the carpets become more and more difficult as their bodies succumb to the effects of old age. You may find that their cognitive function starts to decline, and they are increasingly prone to lapses in memory or attention.
As their child, who is in comparatively good health, you have somewhat of an obligation to help them navigate the challenges of aging. You can be there for them, whether it’s assisting around the house or helping them understand a new piece of technology. But it can be difficult. Many parents are proud and will feel embarrassed to keep asking for help. Or maybe the burden of care is so great that it is impacting your own life.
Here are some tips to help you provide your parents with the best care possible.
You don’t want your parents to call you up for every little thing that needs doing. If they are well enough, it’s better that you help them become self-sufficient. Technology is a good example. Rather than helping them every time they want to make a Zoom call or access online banking, teach them how to do it once so they won’t need to keep asking you. This approach is particularly helpful for parents who are reluctant to seek help as they can learn to look after themselves and only call on you when it is absolutely necessary.
Caring for elderly relatives is a big job, and it can take its toll on you. If you’re constantly rushing around to help your parents, you may find that you have little left in the tank to look after your own family or take care of your mental and physical health. That’s why it’s so important that you don’t shoulder the burden alone. If you have siblings, they should be helping you equally. If not, ask another family member or close friend if they can help you out occasionally. Make sure you look after your own well-being and avoid succumbing to burnout.
There may come a time when the necessary care outweighs your capabilities. In this case, you should consider enlisting the help of senior care services. Whether residential or in-home, a carer will be better qualified to give your parents the assistance and attention they need. You won’t have to take all this responsibility on your shoulders and can focus on looking after yourself and your family.
I love this week’s book club choice, The President Wears Pink by Mandana…
Image credit Renovating your backyard can be a big and exciting project that can…