According to studies, nearly 1 in 10 seniors have Alzheimer’s disease or some type of dementia. Family members who are taking care of a senior parent with Alzheimer’s disease can find it difficult to accept changes in their senior parent’s abilities. If you’re the primary family caregiver for a senior parent with Alzheimer’s you may have difficulty talking to your siblings about the progression of your parent’s illness. Your siblings may have an easier time accepting that your senior parent’s dementia is progressing if a home care provider can tell them what changes they are seeing in your parent’s behavior.
When family members don’t spend a lot of time with a senior who has Alzheimer’s it can be tough for them to accept that the disease is progressing. When you try to let them know about changes in your parent’s cognitive abilities or personality they may insist that those changes are temporary or not want to accept the reality of your senior parent’s condition.
It is always very difficult to handle these situations. Family dynamics like sibling ages and relationship with that senior parent make these types of discussions complicated. These tips can make it easier to have tough discussions about your senior parent with your siblings:
Talk To A Home Care Provider About Alzheimer’s Care
Alzheimer’s care is specialty care for seniors that have Alzheimer’s. Alzheimer’s care providers have special education and training that gives them insight into how Alzheimer’s affects seniors. Your siblings may have an easier time accepting that your senior parent’s dementia is progressing if a home care provider can tell them what changes they are seeing in your parent’s behavior. Talking to someone who has experience working with seniors who have Alzheimer’s may also give your siblings a chance to ask questions about the impact of Alzheimer’s on your senior parent’s behavior.
Consider Family Counseling
It is a huge thing for the children of a senior with Alzheimer’s to come to terms with their parent’s illness. If the family dynamics are contentious to start with they can become worse as your senior parent’s illness worsens. Professional family counseling can help smooth over hurt feelings and resentment. It can also teach all the family members healthier ways to process their feelings about their parent’s illness.
Take Videos Of Your Senior Parent
One of the things that family members argue about the most when a parent has Alzheimer’s is whether or not changes in their behavior indicate that the disease is getting worse. Having videos of your parent can help show that changes like forgetting names, not recognizing people, or being more aggressive are ongoing issues. Sometimes family members just need to see the changes in a senior parent for themselves. Not because they don’t believe the caregiver, but just because they can’t emotionally process that the disease is progressing.
Prepare A Reading List For The Family
If you’re the family caregiver that is closest to your senior parent you may want to create a list of books that your siblings should read. The more they learn about Alzheimer’s the more they will understand how it’s impacting their parent.