There’s been so much drama in my life these days and sometimes I wonder whether its because I have more time to focus on it being that I’m on a sabbatical.  Sibling relationships can be so complex, especially when there are elderly parents involved.  Everyone wants what they think is best for their parents but no one is on the same page.  I don’t ever want my kids to be in the position that I’m in now with my siblings and my parents.  It’s so stressful and it rips whatever connections u have, apart. 

Although my parents are very fortunate to have each other and still be in their own home at the age of 89, I sometimes wonder, is this the best we can do?  They are nowhere near independent, they have to have two people with them at all times to care for them.  And though my parents are alive, they are fragile physically and mentally.  I can’t imagine what its like to be 89 and I’m not so sure I want to.  

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4 Responses to “Aging and drama”
  1. kim says:

    Old age scares the bejeezus out of me! After what I just been through in the hospital I feel like such a wimp. I hate needles. I hate pain. I hate being hooked up to IV’s and unable to move around easily. It’s only been a few days for me. I can’t imagine living like this for months or years. I don’t wanna live like that.

  2. Martin Sabel says:

    Sibling relationships really don’t change much over the years. If anything our relative positions become more solidified. I don’t necessarily agree that “Everyone wants what they think is best for their parents”. Some kids selfishly think of themselves. Period. For those “kids” truly concerned about their parents welfare it’s understandable we won’t be on the same page. That’s why it’s so important to get everyone together to understand each others perspective. Start by discussing how each of you see your parents care needs. If necessary enlist the services of a geriatric care manager as a guide. Most families are clueless about the solutions. A good geriatric care professional is invaluable. As long as you start from a common foundation perspective of “lets do what’s right for mom and dad” you can reach an accord. My folks are in their late 80’s as well. I understand your concerns. It’s hard to watch them decline.

  3. Natalie Tucker Miller says:

    You’ve highlighted two issues that at the core of what we deal with when our relatives age: family relationships being strained and fearing aging ourselves. It does indeed create painful drama and I offer my deepest compassion.

    Martin offered some great advise. I will add that there are at least two purposes for a guide. First, as he said, to get everyone on the same page. It may not be possible to get consensus on everything, but close enough will work. It might have to. 😉

    Second, having someone other than a family member inform elders of some options can be much more effective than it coming from their “kids”. This way, the kids can remain allies and not get into the “I think you should do this” dead-end. Our parents might be reluctant to take our advise, not matter how practical we think it is.

    As for the relationships piece, it is possible to allow everyone their say while keeping boundaries intact. It means someone has to facilitate this type of interaction, either you or an outside source. Once you are clear with what you want, without pushing your agenda on everyone else, you’re in a better place of negotiation and getting agreement.

    With being fearful of aging, it’s common to be apprehensive about each new developmental phase we approach in life. Getting old is no exception. This takes some concentrated personal development and being willing to change the way you think. There are wonderful resources available today on how to do just that.

    Sorry to go on! I am so passionate about this phase of life, and having been in the situation you describe I offer what I did to ease the strain. I only hope what I’ve said is helpful.

    This is new territory for all of us, and getting help from outside sources could be the best thing you do for your family and yourself that will serve you well into your elder years.

  4. Hearing Aids American Fork says:

    Now Im thinking of how my parents will be after 6years, how we should care for them and whom they can live with.I should be ready by then or else none will realize that.One thing’s for sure, no matter what happens we all love our parents and so we will find the best way to care for them as they grow old.

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