Dealing with Parental Resistance to Caregiving
It’s often hard for parents to accept that they need help from a caregiver. Admitting that you need a caregiver means giving up some of your independence, acknowledging that you’ve entered a new stage of life, and realizing that you’re going to need others’ help taking care of yourself. It’s not something many people want to deal with.
You know that you’re coming at this from a place of love and concern, and it’s likely that they do too, but that doesn’t always make the conversation any easier. This is a topic you will have to address with compassion, patience, and understanding. Keep reading for some strategies you can use to make your parent more amenable to the idea.
Choose the Right Time
It’s important to bring this topic up at the appropriate time. Many people make the mistake of bringing up caregiving when their loved one is in a state of agitation or experiencing a medical problem. It’s understandable that this would be the time it’s most prominent on your mind, but consider the frustration that your loved one is feeling in these moments. They might be feeling angry, upset, or even embarrassed about what’s happening to them and that could make them even more resistant to admitting they need help.
Pick a time when you and your parent are feeling relaxed and they can feel like an active participant in the conversation, rather than someone who is being told what to do. If your parent recently suffered an injury or emergency that makes it clear they need help, wait until the dust has settled and you can tell them why this concerns you. They may be more willing to listen in the aftermath of the event.
Focus on the Positives
No one wants to lose their independence, and some parents believe that accepting caregiving services means giving up control of their lives. Remind your parent that a home caregiver is there to help them, and their primary goal is to keep patients comfortable, happy, and healthy. Patients and home health providers often see each other as friends.
Talk About How It Helps You
No matter how much your parent objects to having help, they’re still going to need it, and if it’s not coming from a caregiver then it’s going to have to come from you. As much as you may want to help your parent whenever they need, your own needs must be considered. Don’t try to guilt your parent, but explain to them that having an at-home caregiver will give you peace of mind and make life easier for both of you.
Your parent may try to convince you that an at-home caregiver is impractical. They may mention the cost or argue that their current doctor is already taking care of them. If you don’t have an immediate answer for these objections, drop the conversation and do some research. Find out what insurance will cover and ask their primary physician if they think at-home caregiving would be helpful. Show your parent how this will work and that you’ve put serious thought into it. It can sometimes take several conversations before a parent will start taking it seriously.
Listen to Your Parent
Your parent might be concerned that accepting help is the first step towards being ignored and told where to go. Don’t dismiss their concerns about at-home caregiving. Make sure they feel heard and reassure them that you’re not trying to take away their independence. Sometimes just letting them know that you’re on their side is enough to open them up to at-home care.
If you would like to speak with someone about at-home care for your parent, or need help trying to discuss it with them, contact At Home Healthcare today.