Michigan Elder Care Attorney Suggests How To Speak To Parents About Their Care Needs

Law Firm Newswire



Bloomfield Hills, MI (Law Firm Newswire) November 25, 2013 – One of the unavoidable issues with growing older is the need for additional levels of care.

Care can encompass anything from infrequent help with household issues, such as repairs or heavy gardening, to assistance with daily activities of living, such as toileting, bathing and eating. It can be difficult to broach the subject of an increased need for care. It works best to use tact and choose the correct time to broach the subject.

“Few people enjoy admitting that they need help, or that they are not as independent as they used to be,” says Michigan elder law attorney Christopher J, Berry. “If your parent is facing a need for care and you know it will be a difficult discussion to have, there are some things you can do to make it less stressful.”

Chose the right time and place, says Berry, to start the conversation. Adult children or grandchildren can open up the subject by allowing the seniors to voice their concerns. They will be the “customers” or clients for whatever care is solicited; allow them to state their preferences and needs related to that care. Their perspective should be honored as much as possible, Berry says.

Also, says Berry, as much as adult children want to step in and take over out of concern, they need to be aware how distressing it can be for their parents to acknowledge that they are getting older and to the point of needing help. Broach the subject, listen to concerns, then let the topic drop, Berry suggests. Let them think about what they want and what they need. If there is not a life-threatening emergency, decisions probably do not need to be made that day. This is a change in lifestyle they are considering, after all, Berry says.

“Elders seldom become more independent after becoming less independent, and they know that,” he says, “Admitting that they need to have someone come in to their home to help them, or that they need to move to assisted living can be so distressing. Give them time and work together to ensure their secure future years.”