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If you are in the situation of caring for a loved one and have made a commitment to placing a loved one on a nursing home placement list, be prepared for the vast array of mixed emotions that might arise when you get that much awaited (or dreaded) call. While you may look forward to lightening the burden that has accompanied your caregiving commitments, you may also feel a deep loss, much like grief. This is normal.
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And the direct costs pale in comparison to lost income and foregone vacation time.
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When it comes to financial matters, communications are necessary in order to avoid or at least minimize family conflict and long term feelings of resentment. It is not unusual for families to struggle with questions on finances and to be concerned about impact on the estate.
According to Statistics Canada, the "sandwich generation" now includes more than two million Canadians -- or 28 per cent of all caregivers in Canada -- with the majority being women between 35 and 44 years old. This number is only expected to rise as Canada's population ages and the older generation is no longer capable of caring for themselves. That leaves us with a generation stuck with caring for their late-leaving adult children and their ailing parents at the same time. How do they cope?
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As our aging population increases, and most care homes are privately owned and outside of the budget of the average hardworking Canadian, the only other rational option is to move your Mom or Dad into your family home.
One of the earliest memories from my childhood is when you'd come home, I'd help you take your shoes and socks off. Memory is a funny thing though; it's not always accurate, but more importantly, and particularly in your case, it's oftentimes fleeting, and unreliable. You may not remember this, or at times fail to even understand, you have an illness called dementia.
There are promises we keep, and promises that as the years go by, we have no choice but to break.
If we made a promise to never put our loved one in a nursing home and now discover we have no other choice, the guilt and heartbreak we feel can be overwhelming. But there are some ways we can cope.
Mom has Alzheimer's disease, your siblings refuse to talk to one another, and your kids are too busy to lend a helping hand. Somehow, all the caregiving duties have been left to you. What to do? Call an elder mediator. The practice is much like other forms of mediation.
Just in front of every baby boomer, there is a parent. Or parents. Like me, on the brink of old age, with all that aging brings. Let us suppose that I am your mother. Chances are, when you ask me, "Ho...
I think people my age, more than generations previously, have friendships with their parents. You talk about things you maybe shouldn't. For women our age, there is less of a physical and intellectual generation gap between mothers and daughters.
My mom's health has been deteriorating greatly over the past year. As an only child, I am her primary caregiver and this last hospital stay has really taken a toll on me. She gets very limited formal help and the rest of her care is left to me. I am so tired and can't concentrate on anything any more.
"How do I care for my dad as his physical health deteriorates? His Parkinson's is advancing and he needs more and more help. I feel unprepared and anxious, but I want to be able to care for him as long as possible."
If your parents are seniors you can give them a priceless gift this Christmas. On your next visit you can put the wheels in motion to help them live as independently as they can in their home, and prevent accidents that commonly happen to seniors and cause unnecessary pain and suffering.
Just in front of every baby boomer, there is a parent. Or parents. Like me, on the brink of old age. Let us suppose that I am your mother. Chances are, when you ask me, "How are you Mom?" I will answer "Fine." Am I? Or am I in denial, protecting you from the truth, afraid to admit to my physical and mental lapses?