How to Start the Conversation About Health Care Agencies
Tips for initiating the in-home care and health care agencies discussion with your loved one
If your parents or another aging loved one may be needing care services in the future, you’re going to need to have a conversation with them about their future. We know how tough it can be to start a discussion about home care, and we’d like to help.
Here are some helpful tips on starting the conversation about health care agencies with your loved one.
Begin the Senior Care Conversation Early
Don’t wait until your loved one needs care services to start the conversation. While it may not be a fun discussion for them, they’ll appreciate being able to have a say in their future well-being and comfort. It’s also important to start the conversation while your loved one is of sound mind and body. Show your loved one respect by starting early and helping them be a part of the decision-making process.
Involve the Whole Family
Don’t try to take on the responsibility by yourself. Give everyone in your family a chance to voice their concerns, offer their own help and support, and reach an agreeable solution. Show your loved one that your whole family is on their side and has their best interests at heart.
Choose a Leader Ahead of Time
You’ll want to choose a point-person to lead the discussion. This person should be comfortable organizing and guiding the conversation. It’s best to decide on this person ahead of time so everyone knows who to look for instruction and details.
Do your research on different care options before the discussion. Write down any questions you have or topics you want to be sure to address. Encourage other family members to do the same thing. If you need help planning your discussion, our health care agencies would be happy to provide you with information and support.
Don’t Be Confrontational
Keep in mind that you are holding a discussion about your loved one’s well-being and future. The conversation should be supportive, understanding, and caring. You and your family members are there to offer ideas and suggestions, not to tell your loved one what to do.
Take Your Time
You shouldn’t rush to try and decide everything in one sitting. Take your time, understanding that this should be an ongoing, open conversation. You may want to consider offering up suggestions a few at a time, so you don’t overwhelm your loved one.
A Note to Seniors
If you are realizing that you may need some extra help in the future, don’t wait for your children to start the conversation. Your children and other loved ones may be denying the fact that you are getting older and postponing the discussion. It may be wise to talk to your doctor about what type of care you may need and look over various care options and home health agencies beforehand.
By taking the initiative to share your preferences with your family, you’ll be sure to have a say in what your future looks like. Also, consider taking this time to talk to a lawyer and getting your will and estate planning documents in order. It’s never too early to start planning.