It can be tough to address certain topics with your aging loved ones. If the conversation involves a parent, it can get intense as you discuss the things that are monitored as a child—autonomy and independence. If it’s a spouse, challenging discussions can bring up a lot of sad emotions. Still, there are important topics to discuss with aging loved ones regardless of your relation.
Whether It’s Still Safe for Them To Drive
You may be concerned over your loved one’s driving ability due to the daunting statistics about aging and driving. It can be tough to express your concerns over whether your loved one should be driving, especially if they’re the same person that taught you how to drive several years back.
If your loved one’s sight or mobility has become severely hindered with age, you’ll need to bring your worries forward. Tread the conversation lightly so as not to offend your loved one. Remember that it will likely be just as tough for your aged loved one to talk about as it is for you.
Whether They Have Any Pre-Arrangements
Death can be a harrowing subject, but it’s a natural part of life—making it an important topic to discuss with aging loved ones. Determining whether there are any pre-arrangements is a critical step when making final arrangements for a loved one and can make the process a whole lot easier for those overseeing plans while grieving a loss.
When talking about your loved one’s final wishes, it may be appropriate to bring up whether they have a completed will or trust. Without a will or trust, your loved one’s assets are put through probate. Often, a large portion of their estate’s value is lost in taxes and court fees.
Whether They Need Long-Term Care
Many aging adults have a difficult time admitting they can no longer care for themselves. It’s a hard realization to come to, which is why you might become responsible in initiating a conversation about long-term care.
Together, you and your loved one can peruse through nursing homes and senior care facilities online. Ask your loved one about any requirements they have for their future location, as you want to optimize their quality of life however possible.
Whether Their Health Issues Are Being Taken Care Of
Some people are more defiant than others when it comes to being proactive about their health. If your loved one does not seek routine medical checkups for their existing conditions, it may be necessary to start a dialogue on the importance of monitoring their own health. Criticizing their inattention to their health won’t be helpful—provide your loved one with guidance and referrals to medical facilities or professionals they can go to.
If your loved one has a degenerative disease, such as dementia or Parkinson’s, you should educate yourself on the condition as much as possible. Speaking with medical professionals and reviewing medical blogs can provide a better idea of what to expect and how to prolong symptoms when possible.