Caretakers’ Burden(s)

I expect to remain healthy and just fall over one day.  This is not very realistic, but it’s what most senior citizens do.

Then they assume that if they  need help, their children or other relatives will be able to take care of them.

What they don’t consider is:

Do these relatives have the time, money and resources to take care of you?  What if their house needs to be modified because you’re in a wheelchair or can’t see?

Do they work?  Will they have to give up working to take care of you?  If so, have you thought about what that will do to their social security and/or pension?

Will they have to choose between taking you to the Dr. or going to their child’s soccer game?

Will taking care of you interfere with their chance for promotions at their job?

Do you trust them, or have you had the conversation with them, so that they will make a choice that suits you if THEY have to choose a nursing facility or even an assisted living facility?  This also applies to rehabilitation places where you might have to go after a surgery if you live alone.  Do they know what you want?  What you/they can afford?

Remember it will be THEIR house and THEIR rules not YOURS.  This is a daunting challenge for many of us.

Bear in mind that family caregivers are more at risk for poor health due to exhaustion from doing too much for you, anxiety about your condition, stress due to adjusting to you living with them and its affect on their children and spouse, etc.

Consider the book “The Other Talk” as well as my book “It’s Your Move: Choices for Senior Living”  and create a plan with them .  This lets them know what you want, what you can afford and what some of the choices are.