Bringing in-home care to an elderly loved one can be a difficult change. In a survey, a majority of seniors expressed their fear of loss of independence was greater than their fear of death. Many senior adults take pride in their independence and admitting they may need help around the home can be a blow to their pride. Even when family members have their best interest at heart, the preparation may be a challenge.
However, in-home care allows seniors to
continue living as independently as possible in familiar settings, while
benefiting from supervision and a little additional help. Since you're bringing
someone into their home, your first step is to be sure they are comfortable with
the idea of a stranger taking on some of the tasks you've likely been doing
Taking care in this transition and negotiating
with your family member can go a long way towards improving the situation. It's
important to first understand your loved one’s concerns and help them accept
what's prompting the need for in-home care and the personal issues that may
prompt their refusal to consider it.
Recognizing the underlying objections isn't
necessarily easy, but in order to make the process go smoothly, they must be
found. With some advanced planning, bringing an in-home caregiver may actually
reduce stress for you and your elderly parents. However, one of the more
difficult things to accept as you grow older is change. It's important to start
talking about the positive things that will happen by bringing a caregiver into
Be sure you point out the many things your
parent can still do on their own and the freedom to make the choices they will
be given. Assure them that they are still in charge and this caregiver is
coming into the home only to ensure their safety and give them a hand with some
of the things they find difficult now. Talk to them about what challenges they
might want to have addressed. Do they worry about forgetting medication? Would
they like help having their meals prepared? Do they want help getting their
laundry done? These are all tasks an in-home caregiver can assist them with.
Another fear is a loss of privacy. Talk to your parent about how an in-home caregiver could respect their privacy and determine boundaries with your parent for the care team coming in. Don't be shy about communicating your rules and expectations to your in-home caregiver. For instance, where would you like them to park? Is there a specific restroom you'd like them to use?
It may be helpful for you and your parent to set up a dry erase board to help with communication and organization. Your parent may appreciate if there is a private, off-limits place in their home where they can maintain their privacy. Assure your parents that you will interview caregivers together so the decision rests with them as well. Knowing their opinion is valued increases their level of control and may make them more accepting of someone in their home.
Work With Harmony Today!
At Harmony, we are committed to providing compassionate care in your home. Contact us today and we’ll assist you with strategies to ease this transition and reduce your loved one’s concerns.