Additionally, there is the issue of sibling relationships and whether all of the adult children agree on "what's best for" Mom or Dad. For example, one sibling may believe as a result of Dad's death, it is best to have Mom move into an assisted living facility. However, another sibling may believe it's best for Mom to remain in the family home with a few support services such as meal preparation. When siblings don't agree it can create conflict and hard feelings among family members that can have lasting effects.
There is an opportunity to avoid the uncertainty, fear and potential to upset family relationships while parents are in good health. Call a family meeting and sit down at the kitchen table with all of the family members (individuals out of state may wish to participate in person or via Skype) and recognize that these are important issues that need to be discussed. The purpose is to ensure that Mom/Dad/Spouse's wishes are specified, understood and implemented when the appropriate time arrives.
Death is a difficult topic for some to talk about. That's okay and I recommend you express your feelings accordingly at the family meeting referenced above. However, also acknowledge that it is important to have the Conversation to ensure that your loved ones' final phase of their life journey is what they expressly desired. This will allow the adult children to focus on enjoying time spent with family, including parents without a cloud of guilt, regret or uncertainty in regard to this issue.
If you feel that your family would benefit from an experienced professional who is available to inform, facilitate and support your family's efforts to have the conversation, please contact Behavioral Compass Group today at 860.470.3649. We look forward to working with you!
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