Having The Talk

Daughter hugging and kissing her mother on the forehead

You’ve noticed signs that your parent or other loved one needs assistance at home, but the thought of discussing it with them is distressing.

When is the best time to talk about home care assistance? How do you talk about it without hurting them?

Home Care Discussion Tips

Here are some tips for talking with loved ones to make these conversations easier:

  • Be Proactive. The sooner you bring up the topic, the better. An emergency situation such as an illness or injury may force you to seek care immediately giving you a limited window to find the help you need and cause even more stress. This additional strain can be avoided by exploring choices now before a crisis occurs.
  • Be Open. Before approaching your parents or loved one, let them know your desire to discuss this topic. Let them know you love them and are concerned about their future.
  • Be Prepared. Be sure you’ve done your research before you have the conversation so you have a clear idea of what you want to say. If your loved one has concerns about accepting care, reassure them this additional assistance will help them be more independent and provide more time to enjoy life.
  • Be Ready to Listen. As you consider the options together, be sure to listen to them and consider their opinion. Express concerns in a loving manner and use persuasion rather than being argumentative.
  • Be Compassionate. Let your loved one know that you will still be around and that seeking home care is not an attempt to replace your relationship.The extra help can ease the pressure on the whole family, which could help make it easier to enjoy one another’s time rather than worrying over home chores and safety concerns.

Emphasize your desire to help your loved one stay independent. What older adults fear most is losing their independence. If they know you want to help them maintain their independence, they will be more likely to participate in finding a solution.

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