How to Parent Your Parent – When Roles Are Reversed

By Roz Jones

Caring for an aging parent can be a rewarding experience, but it can also be a challenging one. If you find yourself in the role of caregiver, you may feel like you’re parenting your patent. While this arrangement may not be ideal, there are ways to make the best of it. With a little patience and understanding, you can develop a good relationship with your parent and provide them with the care they need. 

Role Reversal Can Be Difficult

It’s not easy to see your parent as someone who needs your help. After all, they’ve been taking care of you for most of your life. But as they age, it’s likely that their health will decline and they’ll need assistance with activities of daily living. This role reversal can be difficult to adjust to, but it’s important to remember that your parent is still the same person they’ve always been. They just need a little extra help now. 

Try to Have Patience

It’s normal to feel frustrated when caring for an aging parent. After all, they may not be able to do things the way they used to and there may be resistance to your help. It’s important to try to have patience and understand that your parent is going through a lot of changes. They may be dealing with declining health, retirement, and other life transitions. All of these changes can be stressful, so try to be understanding. 

Communication Is Key

Good communication is essential when caring for an aging parent. You’ll need to talk about their care needs, budget concerns, and other important topics. These conversations can be difficult, but it’s important to approach them in a respectful way. Try to avoid speaking in absolutes or using ultimatums. Instead, focus on finding a solution that works for both of you. 

Caring for an aging parent can be difficult, but it’s important to remember that your parent is still the same person they’ve always been. They just need a little extra help now. Try to have patience and communicate in a respectful way, and you’ll be able to develop a good relationship with your parent and provide them with the care they need.


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