Juggling the demands of daily life can be particularly difficult for family caregivers. If you’re caring for an older adult, you may need extra help. Your local Home Instead Senior Care® office can offer a variety of resources to make life easier.
Q. Fall is such a busy family time with school and sports activities for our children, and work and home obligations for my husband and me. I’m guilty because I feel I’m neglecting my 72-year-old parents. I know they get lonely. What can I change to make more time for them?
Balancing work and family obligations is never easy for any family, especially those with young children and older adults. The first thing you should do is try to get organized. Do you have weekly and monthly family schedules? If not, sit down as a family and write down all the activities that you, your husband or children have planned. Keep everything on one calendar so you don’t get confused and let activities fall through the cracks.
By doing that, you might find places in your schedule where you can plan a fun activity or a visit with your parents. Why not make your parents a part of your routine? If they’re in good health, they may like to help. Asking them to pitch in to take your son or daughter to school or sporting activities or practice may help them feel needed. At the very least, they might like to attend as guests.
Most families dine out at least once a week, if not more. When you do, why not invite your parents to join you? Or take dinner to them if they’re not able to get out.
Here’s another idea: Perhaps your children could go to Grandpa and Grandma’s home to do homework. Many grandparents enjoy talking with their grandchildren about their studies, and can provide a unique perspective on history and other topics. Such an activity can be a learning experience for both your children and your parents.
If your parents need assistance around their home or additional companionship, consider hiring someone to come to their house. Home Instead CAREGiversSMmay be just what your mom and dad need to add a new dimension to their lives. In addition to serving as companions, CAREGivers can help with meal preparation, light housekeeping, medication reminders, errands and shopping. One of the organization’s most requested services is companionship, which sounds like just what your mom and dad need.
Home Instead offers free monthly newsletters with tips and advice for caregivers of elderly loved ones.
Each Home Instead Senior Care franchise is independently owned and operated.