A bit of a different article today on the blog but it’s a topic that’s got us thinking of late as we’ve watched several TV shows and also have a lot of family members getting older and making us think more about the future.
One of the most humbling aspects of life is dealing with age and its various states of decline. When it’s someone you love, it can be heartbreaking, but sobering in equal measure. Getting old is something that is inevitable, but if you have family that is ageing around you, you’ll want to do all you can to ensure they get by.
So, if you’re a young couple or a young family and you are adjusting to those that are nearest and dearest to you getting older, what do you need to consider doing to help? Below we share some of our thoughts.
Providing The Homely Comforts
Perhaps you want them to move in with you, and if this is the case, you’ve got to create a peaceful home environment, but this can mean a lot of changes, not just in terms of the setup of your house, but how you live your life.
It’s important to provide as many homely comforts as possible. And at the same time, remember that they will need to get used to this new environment quickly, so you have to provide as smooth a transition as possible.
In one respect, it could be due to their senses declining, like their hearing. And now, we live in an age where there are hearing aids with cutting-edge direct streaming capabilities, as well as other sensory devices that can help the person in question come to terms with getting older.
When they live with you, this can be quite a challenge to take on, and you must know when you’re both not able to do it anymore. We all really want to look after the people we care about, but there has to be a time when we admit to ourselves that we can’t keep pushing on anymore because it’s not benefiting the both of us.
Modern tech is a great way to make things easier for family members who are getting older.
Making Time For Yourselves And Asking For Help
Perhaps you and your partner have been through everything, and discussed the budget, how you are going to do it, or maybe it’s about organising your timetable more efficiently so you can give the elders the care they need.
At the same time, you need to realise that feeling burnout is a very palpable outcome. As such, you’ve got to figure out where your limits are. Being a carer in any capacity is more than a full-time job. And ask anybody who’s had to do it from a young age, it can have such a major bearing on their abilities, not just to live their own lives, but to even enjoy downtime.
This is why you have to be strict in making time for yourselves. Not only so you get downtime to recover, but you can realise that when it’s a bit too much, that you get extra help on board. Sometimes we can feel too proud to ask for help, that we can do it all ourselves, and this is truly the measure of a caring person. But we all have our limits.
Asking for help, even in terms of respite care, or just getting a friend to come by and help with housework can be that little bit of help that means so much.
Support Each Other
You can both feel focused on the task, but you have to support your partner, and they have to support you. As the in-laws are getting older, it can put a lot of pressure on a relationship, and this means that you’ve got to realise when it is hitting your own breaking points.
Supporting each other isn’t just about asking each other how you are on occasion, but it’s about having that open dialogue. That way, you both feel able to support each other because that conversation is free-flowing. It’s important to re-evaluate the situation, and again, so you can determine the best course of action for your in-laws, as well as yourself.
And talking about it is the only way you can keep everything open. We can get bound by strict timetables, and that sense of duty, but this means that we can easily neglect the other person, and they can neglect us.
Got Something To Add?
Share your thoughts on this subject with us in the comments section below.
Until next time, thanks for reading.
Helen, Nial and Lewis.