As a parent gets older, you may come to realize that they may soon need to be looked after. It can feel like a real role reversal and like your world has spun on its axis; parents are meant to look after you! But as much as we would love them to stay young forever, time moves on and things do change. There will come a time where they just won't be able to physically do the things that they used to anymore. And it will be hard to deal with. Here are tips to help you handle these changes...
Nothing will help you get through this difficult time as much as acceptance will. A whole new chapter has begun and the more you accept its inevitability, the less it will cause you pain. You're going to have harder days that others but essentially, life will go on.
2. Expect nothing in return
You're going to feel frustrated and drained because you're going to be taking care of someone potentially every day. Although you probably won't want anything in return, some days you won't even get a grateful thank you, you so crave. You have to accept that your parent is changing and they no see you as the caregiver as well as their child. They may even act like they're frustrated with your presence and behavior in a dismissive manner. Try not to take this too personally; always keep in your mind that they are unwell and their thought process isn't what it used to be.
3. Explore your options
There are many things on offer that could help you and your family at this testing time. It could be worth looking into senior companion care and home help. If this doesn't appeal to you and you need more, you may want to consider various living arrangement options. These services can assist with home-care and practical things, as well as provide cognitive stimulation. It's important that your loved one still feels like they have a life of sorts. If you can help them feel less lonely, then there are many things that you could enlist.
4. Ask for advice
They are your parents and they still want you to be their child. When you have a problem, ask for their advice as you always have. Try not only to see yourself as a caregiver and let them have their say. After all, they have a lot of experience behind them that could be invaluable to you.
Remember to stay positive. A healthy frame of mind will help you overcome any difficulties that you might encounter. Keep communicating with you other family members and talk any issues you have through with someone that you trust. Keep your normal routine going as much as possible and make sure you make time for you. It's vital that you don't neglect yourself; it will only lead to feelings of loneliness.