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Seniors who have Elderly Parents

by Kendall VanBlarcom

As life expectancy increases, it is more common than ever to find senior citizens who have elderly parents. Ideally, parents remain able to take care of themselves in their own homes. But, it is also true that many senior citizens find themselves either helping care for their elderly parent or choosing a facility that can attend to their needs.

Caring for Your Elderly Parent

For some senior citizens who have elderly parents, the care needed is primarily social. If their parent is able to take care of their own day-to-day needs, care might be a bit of help with errands and appointments or a simple meal together time and again.

But if your elderly parent’s health declines, you may find they are in need of more support over time. In this instance, if you decide to care for your elderly parent yourself, in your own home, be sure you have the right support systems in place. All day, every day, is a lot for one individual. Talk to other family members to see if they can help out. Or, even if you don’t have the resources for full-time help, there could be a part-time hire that would alleviate your stress.

The Caregiving Relationship

When you are in a caregiver and care recipient relationship, there can be pitfalls. Children and parents often have patterns in place. For some parents, they expect to make all of the household decisions and are unable to relinquish that control. For others, it is criticizing the choices of their adult children. If you are in a situation where an aging parent with declining health continues to be overly critical, it can be incredibly difficult to establish new patterns.

If you are taking care of a loved one and they seem to desire control over you and the household, seek help. Talking through issues, and finding ways to set boundaries, can turn around a difficult relationship. Establish what is essential for your own mental and physical health.

Deciding on a Care Facility

Sometimes, a family decides the best option is for an aging parent to move to a facility. There are steps to making this transition easier for senior citizens who have elderly parents.

Although getting the process started can be awkward, you might find everyone is happier once you find a center. First, get the individual who is moving to a center involved. Let them have a say in the decision because it will be their home, not yours. That said, be sure the nursing home or senior center chosen is fiscally responsible. Look into what insurance will cover and if other benefits are applicable, such as veterans’ benefits.

If you are one of the many senior citizens who have elderly parents, know you are not alone. And if you find yourself experiencing stress, anxiety, or depression, there is help. Reach out today.

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