Coping with Aging Parents

My mom’s health is declining, that’s something really hard to admit out loud some days. Neither of my parents were ever the pinnacle of physically fitness and they work very hard on a daily basis.  So to be honest I always knew this day would come, I just kind of hoped it would happen after my 20’s. It’s hard having your parent’s health declining while they still consider you a child. I swear, I say things and they just go in one ear-and out the other. What I’m trying to say is, it’s hard to parent your parent when your parent is still parenting you. LOL, if that makes sense?

It’s definitely a frustrating process for both parties; taking on someone else’s struggles can be overwhelming. From my experience, I think it’s really important to have someone or something to relate to. Here are some helpful and positive ways to deal with your aging parents.

Take time for yourself. There are weeks where I find myself constantly doing things for others, which isn’t bad but we need to remember to also save some TLC for ourselves. Go to the spa, get some ice cream, listen to music, play video games or paint. Do something that brings joy to your life.

Remember all you can do is try to help. I think a lot of my stress resonated in my negative perspective, but really all you can do is try and help. You can only do so much until it starts affecting you and you need to make sure you look out for number one. Try to think about positive aspects of your life; sometimes I’ll make a list of everything I’m thankful for. It helps me remember all the good in my life.

Remember to be humble. At the end of the day they’re your parent and they need you. It makes it twice as hard on them when you’re being difficult or non-sympathetic. However their health is declining you should be respectful and care about what they’re going through because it’s definitely not easy.

Plan fun things to do. The simplest things such as a family dinner or a game night with friends can help provide a sense of relief during stressful weeks. It also helps to keep you goal oriented and able to plan for new experiences.

Lastly, take it one day at time.