As the saying goes, many hands make light work, and that’s certainly true when siblings are taking care of aging parents. If you and your siblings work together in harmony to fulfill the needs of your senior family members, congratulations! In many cases, however, one sibling takes on most of the responsibilities. This can quickly lead to misunderstandings, conflict, and hurt feelings.
These three easy steps will allow you to more fairly balance caregiving duties with your siblings.
- Call a family meeting. It is essential to make sure you and your siblings are all on the same page. Straightforward, open communication is crucial to expressing your perspective and hearing theirs. Plainly explain that you’re feeling stressed with handling most of the caregiving responsibilities, and that you would appreciate more support.
- Create an inventory. Be specific about all of the responsibilities that go into your family caregiver role. Determine who is best equipped to assist in each area based on time or distance constraints. Even if one of your siblings resides out of the local area, there are lots of ways to assist remotely, such as exploring resources and services, setting aside scheduled time for FaceTiming, paying bills online, etc. In-person tasks may include:
- Making meals
- Cleaning and laundry
- Yard work
- Trips to the grocery store along with other errands
- Pet care
- Transportation to doctors’ visits, the beauty salon, weekly religious services, etc.
- Record details. As soon as you have agreed upon a good division of obligations, write down your decisions and provide a copy to each person. Note any other important issues that arose in your conversation that can help guide subsequent conversations. Be sure to think through future planning needs as well. If one of your parents is in the first stages of dementia, for instance, you will want to be equipped for growing care needs as the disease progresses.
Even with the help of your brothers and sisters, managing the care needs of aging parents isn’t easy, especially when balancing your own family, household, career, etc. One effective way to ensure a healthy life balance for you as well as your siblings is by partnering with an in-home care provider, like Anthem Home Care, an award-winning provider of in home senior care in Portland and the surrounding communities.
Our caregivers are fully trained and skilled in all of the care tasks listed above, and so many more. We are here to work with your family to fill in the gaps in care – whether only for a couple of hours each week or up to around-the-clock assistance. This allows you and your siblings to choose the care tasks you want to manage yourselves, and leave the rest to us.
Provide your parents with the most beneficial care, while guaranteeing you and your siblings have plenty of time for self-care. Get in touch with Anthem Home Care, a trusted provider of in home senior care in Portland and the surrounding communities, at 361-643-2323 for a free assessment and more information about the ways we can help.