This post is also available in: French
It’s easy to think that our parents are going to be around forever, isn’t it? it’s easy to think they’ll always be the same and never grow older, and subsequently always be fit and healthy enough to look after us. Unfortunately, Father Time always has his way, and these hopes and dreams are squashed. Unfortunately, our parents grow old and it’s not them that has to look after us anymore; it’s us that looks after them. You will more than likely have to face this turning of the tables. When that time comes, here are three challenges of caring for elderly parents and how to best handle these tough moments.
Challenge #1: They will get frustrated
Your parents are likely to become frustrated at the fact that they cannot do a lot of the things that they were able to do their whole life. That makes sense! They feel they are losing their sense of independence and are coming to terms with aging.
If you want to give them the best care possible, you’re going to have to accept these frustrations and push through them anyway in respect to them and the job they have done for you their whole life. Specifically, if these frustrations are born of your parent not wanting their home to change, then don’t make them leave. Instead, help in their elderly condition.
For example, you might get a stairlift fitted for the home. Apply other necessary changes to their house for their safety too.
Challenge #2: Trying to do it alone
You can’t do it alone. It’s as simple as that. Although it’s difficult to hear!
As much as you might want to or try to, you just can’t do it all. This is a demanding job in terms of what you will have to do and when you will have to do it (24/7).
So, share the burden with any siblings you have. Perhaps most importantly, ask for help from your spouse or maybe even your children, depending on their age.
Seek help from professionals in the homecare industry too. Reaching out for support will not only ease the pressures on your shoulders, but you will also help your parent too because of the fact that they will receive better care as you’re not exhausted all the time.
They will also still get to interact with a number of different people daily. That can be great from a social perspective.
Challenge #3: Saying goodbye
Eventually, the time will come when you have to say goodbye to the only people who have always been around and there for you. Yes, no matter how long your care for your aging parent and no matter what standard of care and life you provide for them, their time to go will come at some point.
It’s important not to fear this end, and it’s equally vital to stay calm when it is upon you and continue to care for your parent. Specifically, remain calm and provide your parent with the end-of-life care that they will need at this stage.
No matter how tough a time it is, it is imperative to keep the comfort of your parent in mind. In turn, keep them as comfortable as possible.
For more advice on dealing with an aging parent and ensuring they still get all that they can out of life,check out this HuffPost article. Feel free to comment below on challenges and caring for parents to help others.