The Seattle Times recently published an article titled Parenting Your Aging Parents–When They Don’t Want Help.
This article contains many important considerations that family members should be thinking of when addressing the needs of aging parents, though we may not want to.
When families are at the stage of life where parents have reached an age where they can no longer care for themselves, conflict can arise quickly. All family members have their own experiences and believe they know what is best, and often times, families are unable to compromise, to the detriment of family relationships and the health and welfare of the aging parent.
How you communicate will often be as important as what you communicate. Treating an aging parent with respect, and considering their desires and feelings, can go a long way in finding a compromise that puts their health and safety first, and your mind at ease.
Life is inevitably full of change. People grow up, and then grow old. Needs change, circumstances change, health changes, and it can be overwhelming to know how to navigate every situation. Be patient with your aging parents, and with yourself. At the center of every disagreement about long-term care decisions is a life-long relationship. As the author of this article says, “most of all, your parents want to feel emotionally connected and accepted, even in a diminished state.”
If you find yourself in this situation and have any questions, please contact Mike Longyear, or any of our other Personal and Estate Planning attorneys and Elder Law attorneys, or call us at 206-624-6271.