Are you part of the Sandwich Generation? These are people with a child at home, an adult child who returns home, and/or a spouse/partner at home, who are also caring in some way for a parent. You’re sandwiched between caring for one generation and another.
It may not seem like much, but it can be incredibly hard emotionally and financially. It can even cause physical strain if you’re lifting parents out of a tub or shower, out of bed, or in and out of a wheelchair multiple times per day. You need to talk to your parents about their goals in terms of aging.
Why Plan Ahead?
It may seem awkward to plan for the worst case. After all, your parents may be active and healthy for many years. Why bother planning ahead?
While it’s uncomfortable talking about the negatives of aging, it’s also important. As one family learned, postponing the discussion caused a rush of planning when they were most stressed. Their mom was in the early stages of dementia, but their dad was healthy.
One evening while getting into bed, he had a seizure. Doctors found nothing concerning. Days later, he had a stroke. Doctors ran more tests and found a brain tumor. Their healthy father was dying and doctors couldn’t do anything to stop it. His stroke led to pneumonia that ended his life.
The siblings were all under the age of 50. While grieving, they had to figure out how to balance the care their mom needed with their children, jobs, and household management. The stress was extreme. They tell everyone they know to plan in advance as a precaution.
What Do You Need to Talk About?
Ask your parents what their plans are? Do they want to stay in their home or have they thought about downsizing in a new town, city, state, or country? If they want to downsize, what is stopping them from doing so while they’re healthy?
If they want to age at home, have they thought about what happens if one of them needs a wheelchair? Is the house set up for wheelchair use? Would costly improvements be needed? What happens if they can no longer drive? Are they close enough to friends and family that rides would be easy to find?
How do they feel about senior care services? If the day comes when they need help, would they expect the family to help out or would they feel like a burden? Could you quit your job, reduce work hours, or balance your work with their care?
Once you know what plans are, call a senior care agency. Ask about the most popular services and make sure your parents wouldn’t benefit from weekly visits to help with meals, transportation, housekeeping, or laundry. Find out senior care prices before you hang out. You’ll feel better if you’re prepared.
Are you or a loved one considering hiring Homecare in Orem, UT? Please talk to the friendly staff at December Rose Senior Care at Home. Providing Home Care in Highland, Utah and Surrounding Communities. 801-427-ROSE (7673)
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