When you’re concerned about your senior’s health, particularly an issue that she doesn’t want to talk about, you have to address the situation carefully. These tips might help.
Open the Topic, but Let Her Guide the Talk
You might have been waiting a while for your elderly family member to bring up the topic of her health or of a specific health issue. If that doesn’t happen, though, you’ll need to bring it up yourself. The thing is, once you get the ball rolling, it’s important to let her guide how the talk goes. If now really turns out to be a bad time, you may have to try again another time. Maybe talking about her health or the idea of elderly care providers is difficult for her, so it could take several tries to get the conversation started.
Try not to Argue
It’s really important that you avoid arguing with your senior as much as you can. The purpose of this talk isn’t to start a fight, it’s to find a solution. There’s something that you’re concerned about, and you want to help. Whether you’re trying to suggest bringing in elderly care providers or you want your senior to talk to her doctor about health concerns, arguing isn’t going to do what you want.
Be Careful with Advice
You might think offering advice is a great idea, but it might go over worse than you expect. That’s especially the case if your senior hasn’t asked you for any advice. Try to be very careful with offering opinions and advice that you know your elderly family member isn’t going to like. Phrasing it as a question or mentioning it as an option may be a better approach.
Make Sure Your Senior Is Involved in Decisions
One of the reasons your elderly family member might not be too happy about discussing health issues can come down to independence. If your habit is to leave your senior out of the decision-making process, she’s more likely to balk. Give her choices and work with her to make those choices ones that meet her needs.
Take Notes so You Don’t Forget What You Decide Together
The worst thing that could happen after you and your senior do hash out a solution together is for you to forget what you both decided. It’s much better to take notes and to rephrase the final decision to your senior to make sure you both understand what you’ve worked out. This can help to avoid hurt feelings and mistrust later.
It doesn’t have to be a battle to share your concerns with your senior about her health. If you can work together, that’s much better for both of you. Making future decisions, especially about elderly care, takes a well thought-out plan and consideration. Knowing how elderly care can help with health issues for your parent before your conversation starts can help the two of you plan ahead.