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home | Getting Started | Putting Out a Caregiver 911?

Putting Out a Caregiver 911?
Alicia Golden-Herrera

What To Do When Your Empty Nest Has A New Egg: Your Mom or Dad!

Hey what happened to that happy-ever-after story?

You know... The one where the kids grow up, get responsible and leave home so you can finally live your dream life?

No one mentioned that this would be right about the time when one or both of your parents may be unable to live alone. So they would need to move in with you.

Wow, what a set of new issues this turns out to bring!

Well if you're one of the growing number of adults each year that are facing this new dilemma, here are some strategies you can use to help you get over the hump.

1.  Get Educated, Stay Informed

You're already on the right path, because you're reading this. The internet is full of information, but what you need is the right information for you. Everyone has different needs based on their parent's age, physical condition and mental capacity or alertness.

There is no one-size-fits-all resource.

If you like to read, you will find lots of free material at your local library. Start there. Scanning some of their books or magazines can also give you a feel for the type of information available and in what form.

Audio and video products are widely available on an array of topics. You'll find lots of those at any bookstore, or even at nearby superstores.

What you want to do is be open-minded and avoid feeling panicked. Many people have gone down this path; or are currently experiencing this. There is help.

2.  Get Help

With so many organizations, churches and government departments around, you can be assured that someone, somewhere can get you the answers you need.

You may not be used to having to discuss your family "situation" with anyone, and you may even feel bad about it…But as the saying goes, "Do it anyway."

And don't be afraid to reach out, or open up to family and friends. You never know who else may be dealing with the same things. Then you can go through this guided or, if they are new to this also, you can help each other maneuver through the rough waters.

3.  Get Going

With this new living situation comes a lot of work. So one of the very first things you need to do is create a checklist. Not just any checklist. You need to start writing down a rough list of some basic things you'll need to have and do.

Just like you wouldn't go on a trip without a thorough list of things you'll need, you now have to think about supplies, house arrangements, and activity-type items.

Will your parent need more or different personal care products? Do you need to re-arrange your rooms? How often will you be able to take your parent out for exercise or to see their friends?

These are just some questions you may want to address.

No More 911 Feeling

Whether you know ahead of time that your parent will need to move in with you; or if it happens unexpectedly, you can avoid feeling overwhelmed if you follow these simple suggestions. A little knowledge and some preparation will get you far, as you move through this new life-altering event.


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