Tips for Sons of Aging Parents

It can be tough to cope with the reality of your aging parents even if you are no longer young yourself. You may be concerned about their health or finances. You might feel caught between being a good father to your own children and a good son at the same time. Emotionally, it can be difficult to adjust to any limitations that your parents face even if they remain relatively healthy simply because you may not think of them as old. The tips below can help you give your aging parents the support they need while also taking care of yourself and your own family.

Financial Issues

One way you may be able to assist them is with organizing their finances. Some families are very private about money, and they may not want to get specific about their financial situation. However, there are a number of different ways you may be able to help them, from making sure their estate planning documents are in order to helping them make sure they are getting the most of their assets and more. If they have permanent life insurance policies, they may no longer need them and might be able to sell them through a life settlement. This can give them additional money to use in their retirement. You can use a life settlement calculator to help them determine if they qualify to sell the policy and what its value is.

Recognize Their Autonomy

It can be difficult to feel as though you are switching roles and that you are assuming a kind of parental role with your mother and father. It’s also important that you don’t become overwhelmed by this. Adult children need to recognize the autonomy of their elderly parents and keep in mind that even though those parents may make decisions that seem frustrating, they are adults as well and they are ultimately still in charge of their own lives.

Setting Boundaries

Sometimes, navigating this stage of family life can be especially challenging. Your spouse and children need you at home, but your parents need you as well. Depending on the situation, there may be times when you need to set boundaries with your parents, especially if they live nearby. You want them to be healthy, happy, and safe, but unless there is an emergency, there may be times you need to focus on your work or your own immediate family. Of course, this should never lead to neglect, but there are things to consider before becoming a personal caregiver and there may be times when it is more appropriate to try to connect them to senior resources rather than do everything yourself. One way to set appropriate boundaries can be to have a standing time weekly when you phone or visit them.

Be a Role Model

Within families, caregiving tasks often fall to women. Sometimes, this is because they do not work outside the home or there are other circumstances that make this more practical, but this is not always the case. You can set a strong example for your children by taking initiative with your own parents and demonstrating that this is a role that men should play as well as women.

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Adam

What can I say? I've got a passion for beards. The ladies love it, and I plan to maintain this masterpiece until the day I die. It may not surprise you to hear that I run our grooming section.

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