Facing the Facts that Parents Do Get Old and How to Handle the Situation
We might avoid thinking of this, but we have to face the fact that one of these days our parents will not be able to fend themselves, from climbing stairs, driving, changing their clothes, or even feeding themselves. It would pain us to think of what will happen with our parents in the future, but we need to be strong and face reality so we can be prepared to help and give them a comfortable and safe conditions in the remaining days of their lives. There are several things to consider that will help children about this inevitable future condition of their parents.
No children would like to talk about the end of the days of their parents, how much more talking about it. Statistics showed that around 75% of adult children have not had a serious talk with their parents about situations when their parents get old, like living arrangements, their long-term care, inheritance, funeral wishes and so on. Actually, it is not just the children who seem to be avoiding this talk but the parents themselves who are not even discussing it with each other.
Considered as the most emotional and very important topic of discussion in a family, or as others would say the elephant in the room, this matter about parents reaching their old age has to be faced and tackled. Unfortunately, no matter how we dread the day to come, our parents will be fine today and the following day could need badly our care, so the more the family will prepare ahead of this situation, the lesser the family will be stressed out.
This kind of discussion with the family cannot be done just out of the blue, but rather, it is advisable to have a family meeting with your parents and siblings to prepare everybody with the conditions, from financial to feelings. The most difficult part during the family meeting is the thought that you are discussing the days when you will not have your parents in your life sooner than later, and thus it is better to make the agenda as less intense as possible, like saying that the goal of the meeting is to know what dad and mom would need and their wishes as they retire, or something to that effect.
In order for you to be able to handle this kind of family meeting, sources are offering some tips for you to consider. One is to conduct the meeting where members of the family are in person and not doing the chat or email, so that you will get honest feedback from everybody. Other pointers would be to prepare questions ahead of time, take notes of important points for future references, and give each other undivided attention during conversations.