In the fall of 2012, Hebrew SeniorLife gathered together geriatric thought-leaders, researchers and physicians for our inaugural "You and Your Aging Parents" program, an important discussion about the steps one should take to help aging parents as they make decisions regarding health and well-being. Overwhelmingly positive response indicates the need for this information and Hebrew SeniorLife continues to offer this program. Check our events listing for upcoming events.
In addition, we published expert advice from the first program in an ebook, “You and Your Aging Parents,” which Hebrew SeniorLife is offering as a free downloadable pdf. The discussion also inspired our “You and Your Aging Parents” blog series, a series that includes this blog post and covers the various issues and concerns you may encounter as you and your parent/s continue on the journey of aging.
How will changes in my aging parents affect family dynamics and sibling relationships?
Recognize that if your family had difficulties in the past co-existing, those dynamics are probably not going to change for the better. Even good family relationships can deteriorate from the stress involved in caregiving decisions. If all family members try to focus on your parents and their well-being, it can help prevent any actions to their detriment.
It may be helpful to have a family meeting, including all the siblings, to discuss what roles different family members can play in providing support to mom or dad. If you find it difficult to get your siblings to agree to sit down and talk, consider engaging a professional to facilitate the discussion. Geriatric care managers are experts at assisting families in negotiating the push and pull of difficult dynamics. Recognize that family members can contribute in different ways, be they financial or otherwise, to form a cohesive plan of support.
To download your copy of our “You and Your Aging Parent” ebook, visit our website, www.agingredefined.org.