Friday, April 20, 2012

Dealing with an aging parent

More and more of my generation are facing the dilemma of dealing with an aging parent.Raising children has to be one of the hardest, if not THE hardest job, a person ever faces.It's a responsibility that shows up in horrific ways, if not done correctly. And who is to say what is correct. There are no manuals,at least none that are turning out to be the right way of raising young.Dr. Spock tried, only to be proven,by many, that his theory was all wrong.No two people are alike,so the same methods of teaching and rearing children may not work in every case.Parents are usually left on their own,when it comes to raising their young.Trial and error, so to speak, in most cases.Some folks are fortunate to raise their children with no problems, and them some of the best seeming parents end up with rebellious out-of-control children, who are not able to blend in and contribute to society in a normal manner.Then who's to blame.The parents for using, what they thought, was the best method of raising children,at the time, or the child who has to deal with the conglomerate of genes that are handed down to them from generations past.A parent must simply do the best they can with the tools and knowledge available to them,at the moment they are confronted with each and every dilemma that arises.

Well, that is what folks of my generation are dealing with now, when it comes to dealing with an aging parent. The problems that arise from day to day, with our parents, are many.No single remedy will work for every case.Parents come with all types of personalities,as do children. What may work for yours, may not work at all for mine.Ideas and notions that have been embedded in their brains and way of thinking for umpteen years are hard to change.And then again, the reasoning powers of the aging person, seems to diminish more quickly than most bodily functions.It's like trying to teach a stubborn,rebellious child,all over again. It is a constant struggle. You feel you know what is best for them at any given moment, but with their failing sense of reasoning, they feel they know best,and are just cognitive enough to know that,THEY ARE STILL THE PARENT, and they don't fail to remind you at every turn.

Whether our parents be in a group home or their own home, it takes a lot of rearranging of the lives of our generation, to care for them.We must do, what we must do, to care for them in their hour of need.As they decline,they will gradually loose the ability to live alone, but until that time, we must do all we can to keep their world, as normal as humanly possible.
Keep them as comfortable as possible.
Keep their daily routine as constant as possible.
Keep a close check on their ability to take their medicines properly.
Keep a close check on their bills and finances, as possible.That in itself, is a real task. They are usually just cognitive enough to know, they don't want you messing with their finances.
Keep check on their meals. In most cases, they forget how to prepare their meals.
Keep close touch with them by phone,if not by visiting.
In many cases, their hearing and eyesight are diminished greatly, making it hard to carry on in a normal manner.
The day will come when they are not able to live alone,so we MUST be prepared to accept that fact.No matter how hard that will be for some. A super head strong parent like my Mother,will make life a living Hell for all who are trying to help, but we must be strong and prepared for the inevitable.It is near.


  1. Sue, WE have to do the best we can and pray it will all work out for the good.Know one know what we will have to face or deal with but you just take a day at a time and work thu it. Connie

  2. I lost my parents before I had to deal with those issues. However, I have an adopted "parent" and we are there now. I have decided to allow her to let the money run out paying for hired help. Not that any other choice would be acceptable to her. She also has a daughter who is disabled and was/is my best friend. It is devastating to watch chronic illness and aging knowing there is little I can do.

    I wish you strength on this journey.