If you find yourself responsible for most of the care for aging parents while your brothers and sisters are distancing themselves from assisting, you are not alone. In fact, 50 percent of all family caregivers are providing care for an elderly loved one alone, according to a recently available report from AARP.
Understanding why this situation is so prevalent – and learning what can you do to safeguard your own personal health, which can easily be affected by providing care for a senior loved one without help – is imperative. Emotional support, as well as respite care, is an important component of the big picture plan for care. Our aging care specialists provide answers when your siblings won’t help with aging parents:
Common Problem #1: They don’t know what to do to help. Even though it might seem instinctive to simply jump in and meet their needs, this does not produce the ideal outcome for everyone.
- What you can do for problem #1: Create a list of particular responsibilities that you could use assistance with, along with the times and days that help and support are necessary, and ask for volunteers.
Common Problem #2: They are uncomfortable or afraid. For a person who has never cared for a senior family member, it can truly be overwhelming, especially when the stakes are high and the quality of care matters. Sometimes when siblings won’t help with aging parents, it’s because they don’t want to do it wrong.
- What you can do for problem #2: Ask them to “shadow” you for a day to help increase confidence with the particular activities that they are uncomfortable with. A little bit of hands-on training tends to make a big difference.
Common Problem #3: Family members do not recognize the need for support. It may be that from the outside looking in, you have everything under control and running smoothly, and you are not in need of in-home assistance.
- What you can do for problem #3: Have a truthful, open conversation, outlining the pressure you are under. Invite your brothers and sisters, as well as other family members, to visit during a period of higher intensity care needs, such as when you are planning and preparing dinner or helping the care recipient prepare for bed, and enlist their help so they are able to see firsthand how much work is involved.
How Can Home Care Help?
At Happier Home Care, our professional caregivers in Encino, Porter Ranch, Sherman Oaks, and surrounding areas are always here to work with you to meet the care needs of a senior loved one with expertise, compassion, and reliability. Reach out to us at 818-651-6679 to find out more about our in-home care services. Please see our full service area to find us in a neighborhood near you.