How To Parent Your Aging Parents
For sandwich generation, planning ahead is key to good elder care.
How do you take the car keys away from a father who taught you to drive? When did he go from wise council to frail, elderly man?
Unfortunately, the What to Expect When You’re Expecting book series on parenting doesn’t have a volume on parenting your parents. If anyone thinks dealing with aging parents is easy, they’re deluding themselves. It is often one of the most difficult challenges people face during their adult lives–and one for which they’re least prepared.
The consequences of inaction, meanwhile, can be severe. Many adult children don’t understand the complexity of the problem. Why would their parents resist setting up a power of attorney? Will they have to be dragged kicking and screaming to a senior facility? The answer all too often is “yes,” even well after it has become painfully apparent to others that they are no longer capable of handling their own affairs.
The fact is many elderly people don’t see themselves as elderly and hate being around other old people. To them, moving to a senior facility involves making a move that they feel they can never undo; they are moving in their minds from independence to dependence. Hence the kicking and screaming.
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