Being a caregiver can be a challenging job and one that you should not have to do alone. According to WebMD, it is usually just one sibling who provides the care for their elderly parent. Yet, now that Americans are living longer, these adult children are spending most of their time caring for their loved ones instead of providing for their family through a career or spending time with them.
One reason that only one sibling provides care for their parent is that many people are under the assumption that this role is only meant for women. Another reason could be because one family member has more time than another. Whatever the reason, it is important that all family members divide the caregiving work among each other. This is an excellent way to reduce stress and workload. To make the transition from one caregiver to multiple caregivers, here are some tips that will help.
Talk early on
Have an in-depth conversation with other family members as early as possible and before the elder’s health deteriorates. Discuss who would like to take on each task, what the senior’s financial situation looks like, and what caregiving tasks will be necessary for the future.
Find ways to support the primary caregiver
One sibling will inevitably be dubbed the primary caregiver. However, there are other ways family members can show their support for both the senior and the caregiver. It could be through frequent conference calls or meetings with the family, or perhaps making time to have a weekly meal or conversation with the senior may help offer the support your loved ones are looking for.
Talk to a financial planner
Money may be the last thing on your mind, but it is a critical topic to think about. Discuss your aging loved one’s finances with a professional in order to get a better idea of what expenses the senior owes and how their money should be spent.
Put your loved one’s needs first
Disagreements are bound to happen when working with family members, but they should not interfere with the care the elder needs. Even when you and a family member do not agree, think about what the best interest of the senior is.
Being a caregiver can be a rewarding job, but may require an overwhelming amount of energy, time, and money from you. Get the support you need from other siblings by following these tips.