How to Love An Aging Parent
Many Americans view age as a big TABOO, we say now 50 is the new 30?
Given that how do you love a parent who is aging?
1. Most of the elderly when they begin to attend their friends funeral, innately become scared of dying, so they cling on to their independence.
2. Let them do as much as they can physically do with their doctor's consent.
3. Include them in as many activities as possible, always make them the center of attention.
4. Take your kids to see them and let your children allow them to tell "their" stories.
5. Even if they have dietary restrictions, ease them into it, instead of hamburgers try turkey burgers or Moringstar excellent taste and value and don't tell them what it is or they will be immediately turned off.
6. If they live at home physically, check on them everyday, "I am on my way home from work." This way you can assess their living arrangements, in an informal way--you can take out garbage easily, check the fridge when they are in the bathroom, to see what they need. Then, with the groceries you can drop by with a package, or just send Sunday Dinner, without a big deal.
7. Listen, but don't get engaged unless you clearly see signs of physical battering or bruises from falling down, money missing, many elderly often exaggerate the truth to feel validated, so if you have a younger sibling or a care taker living in the house, then listen attentively without feeding into any drama.
8. The lighter things you can do if they are up to it show them how they can watch their old singers, like "Old BlueEyes", Dean Martin, and Sammy Davis Jr. are on You Tube. You can show them how technology respects the elderly.
9. Don't inundate them with negative news, most of them like watching the news and yelling at the TV, but don't add to their agitation by telling them that Dan Jr. is in rehab, and you are facing a layoff, they really don't need to hear it--those issues are for your therapist and spouse.
10. Recall the positive days of growing up, they don't need to hear that they were Mommy Dearest on steroids.
Cheers to loving our aging parents, because we all are going end up there one day!