When a parent comes to a point in life where he or she requires care, adult children often find themselves stepping up to take on the role of senior caregiver. The job poses a tremendous amount of stress in all aspects, but can be almost unbearable when family issues begin to surface and fester. Underlying resentments and emotional scars within the family unit can quickly create a toxic environment for all, but especially for the seniors.
Let’s take a look at three hot button issues that commonly drive family members straight into conflict.
Family Members Don’t Agree on the Senior’s Plan of Care
Family members often can’t agree on how and where a senior receives care. While, as a caregiver, you may feel that a senior loved one is able to remain living independently, another sibling might recommend admitting the loved one to a senior living facility. For that reason, it’s never a bad idea to consult with an expert in the field of senior care or schedule a family visit with your loved one’s family physician.
Parents Resent Being “Cared For”
While there are plenty of families out there who don’t bicker over the plan of care, a growing number of seniors create a chaos all their own. Older adults are notorious for resisting any and all forms of care, especially when that care is being offered by a son or daughter. This is a perfectly natural reaction, as no one wants to feel like a burden to the family. To reason with a parent, older adults must make it clear that the ultimate decision is made by the senior.
The Primary Caregiver Feels He or She Bears the Brunt of the Burden
If you are the sole family caregiver, associated responsibilities can become overwhelming. By default, the job often goes to the adult child who lives closest to the parent. With brothers and sisters living thousands of miles away, never offering to lend a hand, the child closest to home can grow to resent his or her other siblings. It can feel like they got off the hook a bit too easily. Asking for help is the only way to receive it, so don’t be afraid to speak up.