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CARING FOR AN OLDER PARENT AS AN ONLY CHILD

December 11, 2019

Only children know a life of independence. They are unfamiliar with splitting up the duties, and while it can be a blessing, it also comes with its drawbacks. One of those times is when an only child becomes the sole caregiver for his or her parent. 

In a family with multiple children, the siblings are a support system for one another. They’re able to split the cost, time, and effort needed to care for their aging parent, and they’re able to provide emotional support to each other if it becomes difficult. An only child doesn’t have any of this, but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible. Read on to learn more about caring for an older parent as an only child. 

Responsibility

As an only child, the brunt of the caregiving responsibilities may fall on your shoulders. Sure, you may hire a caregiver, but it’s up to you to help manage your parent’s finances, health issues, home, and other responsibilities. Remember: Your parent is relying on you now. But that doesn’t mean it has to be a massive burden. Accept help from others, and hire additional caregivers if necessary. Our Quality of Life HomeCare is happy to help alleviate the responsibilities from your plate. 

It’s important to have open communication with your parent. Your parent may not realize what’s going on with you, so you’ll want to make sure you are both open and honest with each other. That doesn’t mean you should complain about your responsibilities, though! Instead, open the doors for communication to be able to verbalize that you’re trying to help. In turn, you’ll be able to learn better ways to help! 

Support 

You may not have the support of siblings, but you can find support elsewhere. Now is the time to turn to friends, extended family members, or a significant other. Depending on your situation, you may even turn to your own child for additional support. Some days, you may need a big hug, and other days, you may need someone to help with your caregiving responsibilities. 

If your parent has private home care, like Our Quality of Life HomeCare, reach out to these other caregivers for support. You can support each other and work together to create the best life for your aging parent. 

Resources

When it’s your first time around the block, you’ve got a lot of learning to do - with anything! That applies to caring for an older parent, so that means you’ll be learning a lot along the way. There are plenty of resources out there that are willing (and happy) to help you! At Our Quality of Life HomeCare, our caregivers understand what you’re going through. We’re ready to jump in and help you, support you, and educate you every step of the way. 

When it comes to the aging process, some days are better than others. You’re already on the right track by researching and learning more about how to care for your parent, and it doesn’t mean you are alone just because you are an only child


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