Senior Alternatives

Care Management and Home Care Services
Dealing with Resistance – Convincing a Parent to Accept Help

October 28, 2012

For many of our elderly parents, the idea of bringing in outside care to assist with daily life is a foreign concept. Resistance is a natural and expected response to the idea that they have reached the point of needing help. To break through this barrier, it’s important to understand why they are feeling this way. Many of the arguments against accepting care may fall into one of the categories below.

Pride. Pride is usually the biggest barrier to overcome for your parents to accept care. In a way, needing assistance is an acknowledgment
of their loss of independence.

Refusal to plan. It’s hard to plan for the future, and it’s even harder to plan for a future with less independence. Remember that it’s better to prepare for the future than to wait for something bad to happen.

Money. It’s hard to justify spending money on something that they don’t believe is necessary.
The best strategy in dealing with resistance is to anticipate the possible objections. The more time you spend brainstorming possible objections to care, the more likely you will be prepared to offer thoughtful and thought out solutions.

You might emphasize to your parents that by accepting care, they will be helping you and making your life easier. Explain to your parents that you are worried about them, but also that you feel burdened by not being able to be with them all the time. By bringing in outside help, you feel more at ease and able to keep your routine.

It’s also a good idea to include your siblings or other relatives in the conversation. If you suggest the idea as a group, your parents may be more likely to respond positively because they know that the entire family is concerned about them.

Beginning the conversation with your parents about accepting care is a difficult task, but it’s one that should not be avoided. It would be a mistake to wait until an incident to begin care. And it never hurts to be prepared for the unknown. Just remember that no matter how hard the conversation is, your parents know that you only want the best for them.

Beginning the conversation with your parents about accepting care is a difficult task, but it’s one that should not be avoided.

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