Caring For Ageing Parents: Should You Do It Yourself?

Elderly woman happily holding the hand of younger woman

Caring for elderly parents is a responsibility that the majority of people will have at one point in their lives. Just as they cared for you in your childhood, your parents will very possibly need your guidance and support once they reach the latter part of their lives and face the potential issues that come with it.

Once your parents reach the age of 65, they will likely be in need of a certain degree of care from you. And figuring out how to do it can be one of the hardest decisions you can make in your life. Are they going to live with you? Are you getting a personal caregiver for them? Can you handle caring for them along with your work and personal life?

As painful as thinking about this situation might be, we need to accept that one day our parents won’t be able to do things on their own. As their children, we need to prepare ourselves and make decisions ahead of time in order to help them be comfortable and happy in the last stages of their lives.

Making living decisions for ageing parents

Deciding what your ageing parents’ living condition will be is the first and most difficult step. You have three options for your senior parents’ living conditions: letting them live with you, moving them to an aged care facility, or buying a miniature home for them.

In making this decision, you need to be realistic and not let your emotions control your judgment. Think logically and consider your parents’ health and needs. If you have siblings, arrange a meeting so you can formally discuss and agree on the steps you will take as a family to care for your beloved parents.

Weighing the options

Senior man talking to younger person

There are different benefits and drawbacks in every option. Obviously, the ideal situation is for your senior parents to live with you. As a family, you would want to keep them home as long as possible. However, if you and your siblings work full-time and have families of your own, letting them move in with any of you would be a lot of work.

Taking care of your senior parents full-time may take a toll on your emotional and physical health, especially if you have your own children and career to focus on. But if you do decide to keep them home, sharing the responsibility among siblings or getting a caregiver will take a great weight off your shoulders.

If you desire to keep them close but your home doesn’t have enough space for more people, buying a cabin for your senior parents and putting it in your property is also a great choice. In Melbourne, Australia, granny flat kits are a popular option for senior parents. This option is suited best for seniors who are still active and independent.

Meanwhile, if your parents require a living environment with medical surveillance, it is best for you and your senior parents to move them to a nursing home or aged care facility. Having a nursing staff looking after your parents 24/7 will be safer for them and will also give you fewer worries if they are dealing with certain medical and physical conditions.

It’s important to remember that there is no one size fits all when it comes to an elder’s living arrangement. Just because you moved them to a nursing home doesn’t mean you’re a bad child. The perfect living environment for your ageing parents depends on their health requirements, the amount of care they need and the amount of care you can provide.

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