Your mother has always been a proud and independent woman, but ever since Dad died, something’s changed. Mom’s appearance is disheveled, the house is a mess, and there’s never enough healthy food in the fridge. It’s reached the point that you’re worried about her health and wellbeing. You’d like to help Mom out more but have a full-time job and household to manage. Plus, you may be moving out of state soon. What should you do? Getting an aging parent to accept home care is never easy. Here’s how to get even the most stubborn parent to agree.
Why Do Seniors Refuse Home Care?
Since the average senior has spent a lifetime running a household and working at various jobs, they don’t like to be lectured by others about managing their affairs— especially their adult children.
Whether it’s from an informal caregiver or a professional, seniors often refuse home care for reasons like:
- Privacy concerns
Confusion and memory loss caused by dementia or Alzheimer’s can further cloud a senior’s judgment. Once cognitive changes occur, convincing a loved one to accept care can be even more challenging.
Convincing an Aging Parent to Say “Yes” to Home Care
Every senior deserves the right to age in place with dignity and respect. Once you start noticing that mom or dad are having trouble performing activities of daily living (ADLs), here’s how to gently ease them into the idea of in-home care:
Have “the talk” with them
Look for “red flags” around your parent’s home like dirty dishes in the sink, stacks of unpaid bills, or unfilled medicine prescriptions. Choose a non-threatening setting to sit down with your parent and respectfully share your concerns. Politely ask them if they are having trouble completing household tasks like laundry, cooking, or cleaning, and offer to help.
Involve your siblings
If your initial conversation doesn’t go well, ask your siblings to chime in. Approach mom or dad as a unified group and tell them how much they mean to you, along with why you are all worried about their health and wellbeing. Hearing the same message from multiple children may be all it takes to change a stubborn parent’s mind.
Recruit trusted outsiders
If you and your siblings are still facing resistance it may be time to involve some trusted outsiders like a doctor, faith leader, or close friend. A geriatric care manager can also do a complete health assessment and make recommendations to the family while your parent is present.
Mention other seniors
Share examples of elderly friends or neighbors who benefited from having a “personal assistant” around the home. Point out family members who have used in-home care over the years and how it allowed them to continue living independently at home rather than going into a long-term care facility.
Point out the advantages
If mom’s feeling lonely, mention how your presence could help cheer her up. If she’s having trouble getting around, mention specific ways that you could lend assistance. Once you have a dialogue going, it’s easier to be blunt and honest with your loved one. Also, mention the advantages of remaining at home versus moving into an assisted living facility.
Persistence pays off
A good strategy is to slowly ease your parent into the idea of receiving care for a few hours per week. After all, Rome wasn’t built in a day. For example, volunteer to take dad to his medical appointments or clean his house. After he’s gotten used to the idea of having someone around— and reaped the benefits— you can usually convince even the most hesitant parent to accept help from their own private “personal assistant.”
Quality Home Care for Your Aging Parent
When you or your loved one need assistance, contact us. We are a fully licensed and insured home care provider with highly trained professionals who are experts at delivering the nurturing that your loved one deserves. While serving as an extended family in your senior’s home, our compassionate caregivers can perform duties like light housekeeping, personal care, dementia care, companionship care, medication reminders, and even live-in and 24-hour care.
Our agency’s focus is maintaining your loved one’s quality of life, along with their dignity, self-esteem, and independence. For your added convenience, all our in-home services can be individually personalized into an affordable package when and where you need them! Please visit us online now to learn more about us or schedule a FREE initial consultation for a senior in our service area.