When seniors can no longer care for themselves, their children usually step in. One or all of the children may take on the role of caregiver, and this could lead to some disputes between family members. If your family is experiencing conflict over a parent’s care, here are some ways to attempt to solve it.
1. Speak Only for Yourself
Conflicts over your parent’s care may become heated quickly. Remember to speak only for yourself and communicate your own ideas. Don’t blame your family members for something that has gone wrong as it could make them more combative.
Caring for a senior loved one can be challenging for families who don’t have expertise or professional training in home care, but this challenge doesn’t have to be faced alone. Family caregivers can turn to Bethlehem Home Care Assistance for the help they need. We provide high-quality live-in and respite care as well as comprehensive Alzheimer’s, dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s care.
2. Let Everyone Have a Chance to Speak
Family dynamics could get in the way during a conflict over your parent’s care. For example, older siblings may be tempted to speak over younger siblings or even dismiss their ideas. There may be a sibling who hasn’t contributed much in the past but wants to share something now. Ideally, everyone should have an opportunity to speak, even if you don’t think their ideas are great ones.
3. Solve One Problem at a Time
Caring for a senior loved one often leads to several conflicts among family members, and attempting to solve all issues at once could cause more disputes. When you and your siblings get together to discuss your parent’s care, make a list of the issues and talk about them one at a time. For example, discuss where your parent is going to live and who is going to address his or her financial concerns. Then talk about scheduling. If there’s a debate over a particular topic, it shouldn’t stand in the way of resolving all of the issues.
Family caregivers often argue about whose turn is it to assist their elderly parent with daily tasks. Some seniors need occasional assistance at home, and oftentimes the family members who take care of them need time away to run errands, take a nap, go to work, or take a vacation. Bethlehem respite care experts from Home Care Assistance are available on an as-needed basis, giving your family peace of mind that your loved one will remain safe and comfortable while you relax or focus on other important responsibilities.
4. Invite a Mediator
If you know a meeting with your siblings is going to be difficult, consider having a third party come in to mediate. The mediator should be a neutral person who either doesn’t know any of you personally or knows all of you equally. He or she can guide the conversation, especially when things get heated. The mediator may be a neighbor, family friend, or a professional.
5. Communicate Frequently
One major cause of family conflict is that some siblings may simply feel left out of the conversation. Make sure everyone involved is made aware of big changes and given the chance to comment on them. Schedule regular family meetings or conference calls so all siblings know what’s going on with your parent. Keep notes on everything that happens, especially if you’re the primary caregiver. Consider using an online program or app so everyone can access those notes at any time.
6. Be Nice
Even if you have strong ideas about your parent’s care, you may need to keep your thoughts to yourself at times. Go into meetings or discussions with an open mind. Try to be nice and pleasant throughout the communication process. Not only will you feel better in the end, but your pleasant personality may even calm your siblings and other relatives.
Hiring a professional caregiver is a good way to avoid several conflicts related to your parent’s care. Although it may be challenging to find reliable, highly rated senior care, Bethlehem, PA, families can turn to Home Care Assistance. Our respite and live-in caregivers are expertly trained to assist seniors with a wide array of important tasks, including cooking, bathing, light housekeeping, and exercise. Call us at 484-350-3874 to schedule a free in-home consultation.