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My Dad Does Not Want to Give Up His Independence

After a lifetime spent being the “man of the house” and looking after himself and others, it’s not surprising that your father may be struggling with giving up his independence and accepting help. Chances are that he’s got the same misgivings about senior care that many have and is envisioning a complete loss of freedom and having no say in what he does and how he does it. So what’s a son or daughter to do when dad is in need of home care but just isn’t having it?

Here are some ideas.

Ease him into it

You can start off slow  by having a caregiver show up for short periods to help with odd jobs—preferably the jobs that your dad would be happy to pass off! Our caregivers are able to do odd jobs, such as housekeeping, meal preparation, or driving. We offer the flexibility to enlist as little or as much home care as you need to help your father ease into receiving senior care. You can gradually increase the hours of caregiving he receives to suit his comfort level.

Give him options

If your father fears giving up his independence, the last thing you should do is confirm his fears and misconceptions of what elderly care means by not giving him a choice. Rather than telling him how things are going to be, give him some options to choose from. For example, let him know what types of tasks a senior care professional can take on with and let him choose those he wouldn’t mind help with. We also allow our clients to choose their caregiver, so be sure he knows that he gets a say in who will be in his home and providing home care services. This shows your dad that his opinions still matter and that he has the freedom to make choices.

Let him know he can continue to do things he loves

Even if his age or health has limited his mobility or ability to do certain things on his own, it doesn’t necessarily mean that his days of doing what he enjoys are over. Our caregivers can provide joyful companionship. This means that they can be there as companions, not as wardens restricting what he does and where he goes. Whether it’s getting across town for dinner with friends, a walk in the park, or catching the latest action movie; our senior care providers can be there to do the things that he enjoys.

Listen to his concerns

Ask your father what things about receiving home care concern him. Let him know that you’re listening and taking his feelings into account. Understanding what it is that he’s most upset about can help you decide how to best proceed when arranging home care services. Common concerns that many seniors have about elderly care include:

  • lack of privacy
  • cost
  • having a stranger in the house
  • losing their freedom

Listen to him, be empathetic, and offer solutions and reassurance.

Don’t hesitate to get in touch with us with any questions and concerns. Sometimes, hearing it from a professional can make all the difference. We’re happy to help!

David Porter, CPCA

Living Assistance Services – Senior Home Care

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