As the saying goes, many hands make light work, and that’s certainly true regarding older parent care. If you and your siblings work together in harmony to meet the needs of your senior family members, kudos! In many cases, however, one person shoulders the majority of the responsibilities. This can quickly lead to misunderstandings, conflict, and hurt feelings.
These three basic steps may help you more fairly balance caregiving obligations with your siblings.
- Call a meeting with your siblings. It is essential to make sure you and your siblings are on the same page. Genuine, open communication is a must to express your point of view and hear theirs. Clearly share that you’re feeling stressed with carrying the lion’s share of caregiving tasks, and that you’d like more help.
- Create an inventory. Be specific about all the responsibilities that go into your role as the primary caregiver. Decide who is best equipped to assist in each area based on time or distance limitations. Even if one of your siblings resides out of the local area, there are numerous ways to provide support remotely, such as researching services and resources, setting aside scheduled time for FaceTiming, paying bills online, etc. In-person tasks can include:
- Making meals
- Housekeeping and laundry
- Lawn care
- Grocery shopping and other errands
- Pet care
- Transportation to doctors’ appointments, the barber, weekly religious services, etc.
- Document details. When you have decided upon a good division of tasks, write down your decisions and provide a copy to each person. Note all other important subjects that came about in your discussion so you can revisit what you talked about in a subsequent meeting. Make sure to think through future planning needs as well. If one of your parents is in the first stages of dementia, for instance, you’ll want to be ready for increasing care needs as the disease becomes more serious.
Even with the help of your sisters and brothers, taking care of senior parents is not always easy, particularly when keeping up with your own personal career, household, family, etc. One smart way to ensure a healthy life balance for you and your siblings is by partnering with Inspired Home Care, a trusted provider of elderly care in Barrington, IL and the surrounding areas.
Our care givers are fully trained and skilled in all of the care tasks mentioned above and so many more. We are here to work with you and your loved ones to fill in the gaps in care – whether simply for a couple of hours each week or up to 24/7 assistance. This enables you and your siblings to choose the care tasks you wish to manage yourselves, and leave all the rest to us.
Provide your parents with the most effective care, while making sure you and your siblings have plenty of time for self-care. Call Inspired Home Care at 847-787-7572 for a cost-free assessment and for more information on the ways we can help.