Setting Family Boundaries with Your Parent When They Come to Live with You
One of the greatest benefits of being a family caregiver for your elderly parent is that you have the opportunity to spend extra quality time with them. This boosts your relationship, keeps your mental and emotional health high, and helps you to find even more meaning in your care journey as you are making memories that you can treasure well into the future. Having your parent transition into living with you elevates these benefits, keeping you closer and allowing all of the generations in your family to benefit from one another. When you are considering establishing this type of relationship, however, it is important that you set boundaries within your family that ensure that everyone is treated with the respect and dignity that they deserve, and that they are given the privacy and personal attention that they desire.
Use these tips to help you set family boundaries with your parent when they come to live with you:
- Emphasize your schedule. Before your senior comes to live in your home you will have a schedule and basic routine that you follow with your family. While there might be some changes that need to be made when your parent comes, you should not be willing to completely change everything. Make sure that they understand your schedule and routine and that they are ready to work around it.
- Know your traditions. All families have traditions and rituals that they follow. Whether it is the TV show that you watch together on a certain day of the week or the meals that you eat in a specific order, these are important to keeping your family close and helping everyone in it feel confident and secure. Maintain these traditions when your senior comes. Establish them with your parent and make sure that they understand that these are not negotiable. Encourage your parent to participate when possible, or help them to find alternative options.
- Keep privacy intact. Everyone in the home, including you and your partner, your parent, and your children, deserves privacy. Make sure that your parent knows the layout of the house and is prepared to respect the privacy and privacy rules of each area of the home. For example, make sure that they know that they are not to enter the bedroom of any other family member or that they are to knock on the door any time that they are entering the bathroom. These may seem like basic concepts, but it is important to review them with everyone so that no one feels invaded.
- Protect your beliefs. It is very possible that you have different beliefs and convictions than your elderly parent, and that these will come into play when they are living with you. Whether it is how you choose to raise your children, modesty standards, cleaning standards, religious issues, or other elements of life, you are likely to differ from your parent in key ways. Identify the ones that might cause conflict and talk to your parent about them. Emphasize with your senior what you believe, why your family does the things that it does, and the involvement that you are willing to have in your parent. For example, let them know that you are not willing to have them discipline your children and that you will not change whether you pray or not before meals, but that you are open to them showing you different cleaning methods. This shows respect to everyone in the house and ensures that your parent coming to live with you does not create tension or negativity within the household.
Starting elder care for your aging loved one can be one of the best decisions that you can make for them in course of your care journey. Introducing an elderly home care services provider into their care routine is not about taking their independence away from them or even not taking on their care yourself. Instead, the highly personalized care services of such a provider are designed to address your elderly loved one’s individual needs, challenges, and limitations in a way that helps them to manage these issues effectively while also pursuing the highest quality of life possible as they age in place. This can include assisting with activities of daily living, companionship to boost mental and emotional health, and providing safe and reliable transportation to help them do the things that they need and want to do for greater independence in their later years. In your role as their family caregiver, this type of care acts as a support for the care that you give, filling any existing care gaps, ensuring someone is with your parent even when you are not able to be, and easing your stress for an improved relationship and lifestyle for both of you.