"Oh, what's that? Gross!" is often the response when cleaning out the refrigerator. An unexpected discovery happens to all of us, on occasion. But it should never be the norm.
Have you found yourself dumping spoiled milk from your parents’ refrigerator? Are the cupboards bare? Are they choosing to eat crackers, toast or simple meals? This might be because shopping and cooking has become too difficult.
These are signs. The simple things are becoming harder. Now is the time to begin the conversation about your parents getting support at home or in a senior living community.
Many children and parents don’t want to admit it may be time. But remember, staying healthy starts with proper nutrition, so it is time to start the conversation.
Getting the Conversation Started
- Raise the issue indirectly. Mention a friend’s mother who is using a community’s home-support service or an article that you read about programs at a nearby senior center.
- Share your own emotions. Example: “Mom and Dad, I know you’ve always prided yourself on being independent. I imagine it’s difficult for you to ask for help, but what are some things that we can do?”
- Set the right tone. Listen to how your parents feel about their current needs, concerns, worries and hopes for the future. Don’t guess or make assumptions about their preferences.
- Use communication that states your concern and avoids criticism. Tell them you are concerned and it would be nice to know they are getting nutritious meals prepared for them daily.
- Avoid role reversal. Helping out doesn’t mean you are “parenting” your parents. The most productive interactions come when parents and adult children are equal in the relationship.
The best scenario is making a joint decision. Begin with an evaluation or visiting communities together to determine what best suits their needs.
Call Live Well at Home by Eskaton for a geriatric evaluation with a care manager. Care managers are nurses and social workers who specialize in assessing, coordinating and equipping you with the information and solutions your parents need. Call 916-459-3220 to schedule a visit today.
Live Well at Home by Eskaton also offers personalized in-home care. They are flexible and available 24 hours a day. For a complete list of in-home services, visit www.LiveWellatHome.com or click here to schedule your free in-home assessment.
Eskaton also provides independent living communities so your parents can lead an active, independent lifestyle while gaining amenities such as dining services, housekeeping and transportation, along with the assurance that professional support is there, if needed.