Guide to Broaching Difficult Subjects with Your Elderly Parent

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Raising difficult subjects with your elderly parent is never easy. You don’t want to upset them or make them feel incapable. However, if you have started to notice that your parent is not coping as well as they once used to, either mentally or physically, it is important to talk to them about it so that you can come up with a solution. Of course, you are worried that you will damage their self-esteem or wound their pride, but ensuring they are healthy is the most important thing. Plus, there are ways you can approach the subject in a gentler manner. With that in mind, read on to discover how to raise difficult issues with your elderly parent, as well as some of the topics you should be raising.  

What sort of issues should you discuss with your parent?

Before we reveal how to broach difficult topics with your parent, let’s first take a look at the different issues you should discuss with them.

  • Managing their affairs – You may want to consider a power of attorney if your parent has been ill or is finding it difficult to manage their own affairs. A lot of people assume that this is a step that is only taken when someone is not well enough to know their own mind. However, it can often be beneficial to discuss this before you reach that stage. There is two power of attorney options – finance and health. The former means managing financial affairs on their behalf, and health means making medical decisions on their behalf. If you have siblings, you should consider holding a joint power of attorney with them, as this can easily be a source of sibling conflict.
  • Your parent’s living arrangements – The time may have come to assess your parent’s living arrangements. Should they live with you? There is a lot to consider, including whether it is the right environment for them, if they want to live with you, if your home can be adapted if needed, if you have the time to assist them, and how it will impact your family life with your children and your relationship with your partner. You need to be honest with yourself – don’t make a decision out of guilt.
  • Whether they can live alone – If your parent cannot cope at home, it may be time to discuss either getting help at home or moving to an assisted living facility with experienced professionals that will give them the care they need to manage their health. This is important if your parent needs rehabilitative assistance, as well as if they are struggling to manage in their home, for example, if they find it difficult to move around, get showered, and get dressed, if they feel lonely and isolated, and if they are nervous about living alone.

How to raise difficult issues with your elderly parent

The issues mentioned above can be difficult to raise with your parent. You don’t want to risk offending them or making it feel like you are trying to take their independence away from them. However, it is important to broach these subjects for the sake of their health. So, how do you go about it? Here are some top tips to help you out:

  • Make sure the situation is a relaxing one – When you do bring up a difficult subject with your parent, you need to ensure that the situation is as relaxing as possible. It needs to be private enough for you to have a sensible conversation, so make sure your kids aren’t running in and out. Nonetheless, you don’t want your parents to feel pressured or worried; so don’t build it up into a big, serious event.
  • Be prepared to listen – You may think that you have it all planned in your head already, but it is important to listen to your parent and accept their point of view. It is their life after all.
  • Manage the process gradually – People do not like change, especially when they get older. This is why you need to manage this as a gradual process. Take things step-by-step.
  • Revisit conversations – As you need to handle things gradually, you need to be prepared to revisit conversations a number of times. Your parent must have time to think on their own about the suggestions you have made. Don’t expect an instant answer. People are less likely to respond positively when they feel like they are under pressure.
  • Think about your parent’s view before you have the conversation – Before you sit down to have a conversation with your parent, think about their likely viewpoint and possible objections. By planning this in advance, you will be able to answer them knowledgeable and calmly. You may even be shocked to learn that they have already thought about the issues you are raising, and they may have solutions that you had not thought about previously, so be prepared to listen to them.
  • Discuss the issues with your siblings and any other key family members – It is important to discuss the issues with your siblings and anyone else that is close to your parent. Don’t turn this into a huge family discussion. Your parent won’t want to feel like everyone has been discussing them behind their back. Only keep immediate family members involved. You need to ensure that you and your siblings are all on the same page before you discuss things with your parent. The last thing you want is a family dispute on top of everything else.

All in all, there is no denying that broaching subjects such as living arrangements and power of attorney can be extremely difficult. However, if you have reached the stage whereby your parent is struggling to cope, it is imperative to have such difficult chats with them. Instead of diving straight in, make sure you use the advice above. Plan for the talk carefully, make sure you are in agreement with your siblings and, most importantly, listen to what your parent has to say.

Baby’s First Home: Buyer’s Guide For Expecting Parents

There’s nothing like having a baby to make you realise that yours and your partner’s ‘young couple’ flat doesn’t have enough space for your growing family. Unfortunately, you have to balance your budget so you can afford both a bigger place, and everything else your little one might need. It’s an overwhelming, but necessary, undertaking. Here are a few tips to get you through this exciting time.

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Brainstorm

When it was just you and your partner, you might have been happy living somewhere within your price range, close enough to work, and not too far from any amenities. Now that you have a baby on the way, you might want to narrow down your criteria. Do you want to live in a good school district? Would you prefer a bungalow so you don’t have to babyproof the stairs? Be clear on what you want before you officially start your search.

Set up alerts

With some much going on at home, you might not have time to search the classifieds, property websites, or peek through the real estate agents’ windows until you find something you might like. Instead, have someone else do the searching for you. Agencies in your local area, such as Manausa Realty, have expert agents that are paid to take all your requirements on board and mind a property that meets all your criteria. Alternatively, you could go to a property comparison site, fill in your budget, area, and room requirement, and sign up to get emails whenever a property that meets your criteria goes on the market. However, you might be better off with an agent; they can let you know about new properties before they go on the website, increasing your chances of getting your dream family house.

Check the surroundings

Remember, you’re not just buying a house; you’re buying the whole neighborhood. Will it keep your kids awake at night if they live close to a busy road, or if the neighbors are too loud? Can you live next door to someone who doesn’t keep their front lawn up to standard? Is it better to live close to a park or a small corner shop? If you think you might like one of the houses on the list, take a walk around the block and see if you can imagine your whole family happy in the area.

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Get an inspection

Before you sign any documents, you should request an independent inspection of the house. The home inspector will look for hidden problems with the house, and you can learn about any issues that may prevent you from buying the property before it’s too late. This may include mold problems, termites, foundation problems and a bad roof. The last thing you need is a faulty house when you have to look after a newborn. The inspection can save you thousands in repairs later on, and you can rest easy knowing your new house is child friendly. If there are problems, you might be able to renegotiate the price.

Easing The Stress Of Being A Mom Will Help Your Family

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Working comes with a whole host of stress. You’re basically dealing with stress from nine to five, with small glimmers of hope and sunshine dotted about. Working as a mum is 24/7, which kind of gives you some inkling as to the amount of stress that is involved. Thankfully, it i the best kind of stress imaginable. It is fun and unique and amazing, inspiring and worthwhile, totally worthwhile, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t stressful too.

Yes, every single mum situation comes with its very own unique set of circumstances. It comes with the territory. But so does the need for you to constantly place an emphasis on your own health and well-being, and don’t for one second think that is selfish. Your being healthy is the catalyst to your family being healthy too.

So, here are some top tips on how to stay healthy, stress-free and sane as around the clock mum. After all, you deserve it.

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Get A Granny-Nanny

We all have that moment when we search the internet for some help, someone who can assist with the kids for just a couple of mornings a week. That would be enough. Well, why not make that someone a granny-nanny. These are semi-retired women that typically don’t have family close by. Nurturing people that will cherish everything you do. They are people that love baking, gardening, reading, colouring-in, and they know how to ace homework, while also cherishing the wonders of children. They are people that want to be involved with children, that’s the key and, in return, you’ll be relieved of some of the stress. You can do those errands you needed to do or just grab a pinch of personal time.

Schedule Your Personal Time

Yeah, this may sound sad, at least to begin with, but if scheduling in some personal time in the same way you would schedule an appointment is the only way you’ll get it, then do it. Personal time is so important. Seeing friends, getting that soft tissue massage you promised your doctor you would get, seeing friends for a coffee, going for a run, having your nails done, or just sitting in a quiet park. Whatever floats your boat on that day. Don’t feel guilty about this either. We all need a bit of peace and quiet, and your family will thrive if you grant yourself that space. Just make sure your family knows that these are appointments, one’s that you can’t miss.

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Bring A PA Into The Family

This idea of having a personal assistant to help in your personal life can be so rewarding, for everyone, especially if you are a mum that balances working with being a mum. The more you accept them into your family the better it will be too, not least because they will have such an important part to play. The reason we are referring to them as a PA is because that will help you distinguish their role a bit more. In the same way, you would lay out a set of tasks for an assistant at work, do the same for them each morning. Then they will know exactly what you would like doing, what principles you cherish and what is important to you, like the operation #dontforget you are championing. All this can be achieved while they also ensure your kids laugh from the moment they get picked up from school to the moment you get back from work, and you won’t feel stressed about the tasks that haven’t been done because, well, they will have been done. A PA is a right-hand person, someone you can trust no end, so why not have someone like that to help with your children?