Being Upfront with Your Parent about Your Concerns
Being a caregiver for an elderly parent can be stressful and emotionally challenging. It is likely that you will encounter times in your care journey when you go through situations that are particularly difficult, one of which is when your concerns about your parent start to develop or worsen. You know that your parent needs extra help or that what they are doing to care for themselves is not enough. Telling your parent about your concerns, however, may seem daunting. Being courageous and willing to be upfront with your parent is essential to making sure that your loved ones get the care and support that they need to stay healthy, strong, and happy throughout their later years.
July 7 is Tell the Truth Day. This is the ideal opportunity for you to evaluate your concerns about your parent and prepare yourself to tell them the truth about your worries, as well as what you think that the two of you should do together to address them.
Use these tips to help you be upfront with your parent about your concerns on Tell the Truth Day:
- Take the time to be clear with yourself. Now is not the time for you to “wing it” with your parent. Take some time on your own to evaluate what it is that you are truly worried about and what you want to do about the situation. Be as sure and as confident in yourself as you can. This will make it easier to express yourself thoroughly and effectively to your parent. If necessary, write down things that you want to talk about, but be ready to speak from the heart when it is time.
- Do not confront. Even if you are upset or angry about the situation, do not see this as a confrontation. This is you telling the parent who you love that you are concerned about them and want them to be happy, healthy, and safe. Go into the conversation calmly and commit to keeping it as calm as possible.
- Have a backup. If you are particularly concerned that your parent will not listen to you, or that they will simply disregard everything that you have to say to them, consider teaming up with their doctor for the conversation. Most elderly adults have great respect for doctors and are often more willing to listen to them when it comes to their needs than they are others, especially their own adult children. Have the doctor talk to them about their health and their possible needs, and make recommendations for how they should handle those needs.
- Resolve it together. Once you have openly and honestly discussed your concerns with your parent, work toward resolving them together. Tell them why you think that an elderly care provider could be the right option for them, and give them the opportunity to discuss how they feel about it. Choose the elderly home care services provider together and ensure that you stay in touch with your parent about their new care arrangement so that you can make modifications as necessary to keep it as effective and beneficial as possible.