How to start talking to family about care
To some people, asking for help at home can feel like admitting defeat or giving up independence. But we know it is the opposite; it can be very empowering! Asking for help at your home or loved ones home shows strength. You are showing a willingness to take the next step to better all your lives.
This post will outline ways to start the conversation with family and friends about the help you need. It may seem daunting, but we will make sure that the process is smooth.
Things to note
Are you finding that being a caregiver to a friend or family member is becoming difficult on top of your other commitments? Are you concerned about their safety whilst you’re not available? Then it may be time to consider their care options that way. You’ll know they’re happy and safe whilst you’re away, and so you can begin to enjoy time together again.
When to have the conversation and how to have the conversation of care can be very important. No one wants to feel like a burden or to feel abandoned, so it’s imperative to be clear that you’re not doing that. You’re trying to better their life. With that in mind, the following will be beneficial to you.
- Choose a comfortable place to start the conversation. Everyone needs to be happy, unrushed and in the right frame of mind. You don’t want to start this conversation whilst someone is frustrated, and initially, you’ll want to reassure them that the decision is theirs and that you are just there to help.
- Choose the right time to discuss care. You might want to prompt your loved ones to start the conversation by asking them how they’re managing or acknowledging that they’re having difficulties. An example might be that you’ve spotted their house is a bit unkempt: “How are you getting on? It’s a lot of work to keep this place tidy, are you managing it ok?”. This enables them to open up about their problems and show them you are listening to help them.
- Make a list of what you are struggling with and how you think a carer would help if you have any ideas.
- Research the types of care. You might find that you initially want to start with a couple of days of respite care to see whether it works for you, or you might want to jump straight into home care or live-in care level of service.
- What are the pros and cons of each care option? Like with any decision, there are pros and cons. You’ll both need to write in pros and cons from both of your points of view. That’s why it’s important to research your different options available, identify any potential challenges you might both have, and work together to overcome them.
- Reach out for advice. Not sure which service would work for you? Get in touch with care providers to find out what their options are and how they tailor them to your family. Also, ask friends and family for references if they’ve been through something similar.
Take your time
You need to know that it can take time for someone to accept that you both need some help. They want to live an independent life, as they will have for many years before. They’ll need reassurance and time to accept the decision and to choose the best option.
This will probably be something you’ll need to revisit in conversation a few times until it becomes action. You may find that your list of struggles becomes much bigger before anything starts getting ticked off. It will be an emotional and hard time.
As mentioned previously, you might find that the best approach is bringing support in gradually, starting with a few key dates or tasks, like having a companion prepare meals or sort out the house, and then building up to a level that you’re both comfortable with.
Common challenges that you might come across
There are a few common challenges that you might come across whilst having this conversation. With all of the following challenges, there is a common theme, patience. You will need to have a lot of patience to go through this. Make sure you have your support base to help you as well. We’ve listed a few below:
Refusing to talk about their care needs
You might find it a little frustrating if they don’t want to talk to you about care. Try encouraging them to talk to someone not as close to the situation about it instead, such as a friend or a healthcare professional. Apparent or grandparent could find the change in dynamic quite difficult. They were once your carer, and now you are there’s.
Refusing to accept their diagnosis
In some cases, they may have recently been diagnosed with a progressive condition or are just becoming frailer. For some people, this can be not easy to embrace especially when they’ve considered themselves to be someone everyone can rely on for that particular strength. You’ll need to have patience with them and understand that they’re finding it difficult to comprehend. Empathise with them and let them know you are trying to support them.
“I can manage on my own”
Is your loved one very independent? Then accepting the need for additional support, outside of their family or friends group, will be difficult for them. They might not realise how much they’re relying on other people to care for them and how those people are beginning to struggle themselves. Live-in care, respite care and home care is very flexible and can provide them with as little support as they need. You’ll need to help them see the pros and cons of a supportive companion, especially if their current support group can’t help. Initially, it might be as simple as getting help for household chores or transport help.
How we can help you
All of our respite care, home care and live-in care services are designed to be an affordable and stress-free way of caring for you or your loved one. Clarendon supports you at any stage in your journey and will complement any daily routines you have. We have supported many families and have a fantastic team of trained, professional carers. We will work with you to provide you with the freedoms you or your loved one needs and simplify your life with you.
At Clarendon live-in care, we have a comprehensive understanding of the daily challenges living with choosing a care provider can present. As a trusted and well-respected provider of live-in care services, you can depend on us to deliver with compassion, dignity, and care.
Get in touch
If you’d like to chat with a member of our team about the different live-in care services we provide, please call us on 0208 439 7722, or if you would prefer to e-mail us, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We’re always happy to answer any questions you may have.