After much discussion, you and your siblings have decided your aging mother needs help to remain in her private residence. The real work now begins as you devise a home care strategy that best accommodates Mom’s current and future needs. In many families, old rivalries can resurface and lead to conflicts as siblings jockey for control while trying to honor their parent’s wishes. If this sounds familiar, using these conflict resolution tips will help ensure your loved one receives the top-notch care they deserve.
Family Members Serve Various Roles
Using siblings as an example, childhood roles often reemerge when faced with a difficult situation like caring for elderly parents. Here are some of the more common ones:
The Armchair Quarterback
This person always has it all figured out. If you don’t think so, just ask them. But for one reason or another, they never seem to be around when you are feeding Mom or taking Dad to the doctor.
That financial tap that your parents turned on during childhood is still flowing years later. In the event loved ones stop paying out, sponges seek other – and sometimes dishonest – ways to get what they want.
This loveable slacker shows up at the most opportune times – like Holiday gatherings – and watches TV while you prepare food and clean up. But when you try to call them to help install grab bars in your parent’s bathroom, it rolls over to voicemail.
Usually the eldest daughter, this unique person is highly efficient, selfless, and someone who can be counted on to bring Mom and Dad a hot, nutritious meal even during a blizzard.
If you fall into the latter category, it’s easy to get so caught up in juggling a household, job, and caregiving that you risk developing caregiver fatigue or even burnout. Once that happens, the health and well-being of you and your care recipient could be in jeopardy.
Your Family Caregiving Game Plan
Don’t fall victim to caregiver fatigue. Instead, take these steps to involve other family caregivers in your loved one’s plan of care:
Hold a family meeting
Siblings and other relatives sometimes just assume that everything is fine, while other times they’re too busy with their own lives. Even if it’s done from a distance via video chat, hold a family meeting with everyone. During the conversation, update everybody about your loved one’s mental and physical health, including any functional limitations they may have.
Honestly share why you need help and try to recruit members for your “caregiving team” based on each one’s time and talents. Be sure to thank everyone for participating, and don’t get discouraged if some refuse to help.
Devise a caregiving calendar
Using each member’s availability and skills as a guide, create a digital caregiving calendar that you can then share with the group. As your loved one’s condition gradually declines, you may need to add new responsibilities or recruit additional care team members.
Involve a trusted outsider
If talking is getting you nowhere, it may be advantageous to bring in an outside professional, for instance, an eldercare mediator, to explain the importance of working as a team so your loved one can remain at home. It’s also a good idea to designate someone as a durable power of attorney (POA), so they can make financial or healthcare decisions on your senior’s behalf.
Have a backup plan
Taking time off doesn’t make you a failure. If no backup caregivers are available, another option is to hire a professional respite caregiver from a reputable home care provider. As a viable replacement, a respite caregiver can step in and provide your parent with the nurturing they deserve – allowing you to take a well-deserved break!
Reliable In-Home Respite Care for Families in Charlotte County, FL
Helping an aging loved one to remain at home can be nerve-wracking when you’re busy or live far away. When you need a hand, contact the caring home care professionals at Home Instead® Senior Care. Conveniently available in Naples, Fort Myers, and Charlotte County, FL, our senior care services help to enhance the aging experience by providing practical support at home delivered with a human touch.
Our reliable in-home solutions help aging adults stay engaged in everyday life with tailor-made support to stay safe and well at home. At Home Instead® Senior Care, it is always our mission to provide a care plan personalized to your family’s needs – bringing you all comfort, companionship, and peace of mind. To learn more or schedule a time to talk with one of our home care specialists, please visit us at www.homeinsteadswfl.com.