Tips for an easier conversation about home care services

Some tips for an easier conversation about aged care.

Throughout life, our parents are often the one we turn to. However, as they get older, the shift from ‘cared for’ to ‘caregiver’ is challenging for many.

Aged care may seem daunting at first but you can reassure your parents it might only mean a little help around the home. Whether it’s help making meals, some cleaning around the home or tidying up the garden, talking about aged care doesn’t have to be overwhelming.

Follow our tips on how to bring up the topic of help at home and make a sometimes difficult conversation a little bit easier.

Starting a conversation

From the outset, express your intention to help upfront. Let them know you are here to support them and their goal to stay living in their own home.

It can be useful to ask if there are any smaller jobs your loved one would like help with, such as upkeep around the home or the paying of bills. You can also talk about some of the daily tasks they enjoy. This will help you decide together which jobs may be most suitable to seek assistance with.

Conveying your message

Knowing what to say and how to say it is essential to delivering your message in a way that is respectful and understanding of your loved one’s feelings. It can be hard for you as the child to assume the role of caregiver to your parent. It’s a good idea to take an intentionally relaxed approach to the conversation and to avoid reacting if met with resistance. Using a conversational tone will help you come across positively and ensures what you want to say doesn’t get lost in translation.

What you want to say:

“The house is way too big for you to keep clean.”

“The garden’s too much for you to manage.”

Try this instead:

“A cleaner is going to pop by once a week and have a chat too. You’ll like her.”

“What if a bloke drops by regularly to help with the lawns?”

The aim is to keep your loved one in their own home, and to make them partners in the discussion and decision making process. Remember, it’s okay if you don’t reach any decisions during the first chat. The important thing is that you have both taken the first step.

Where and when

It’s best to choose a time and place where you’re not likely to be disturbed and where your loved one feels most in control. The fear of losing control is a feeling which can resonate strongly with a loved one when the topic of aged care is brought up. Remind your parent they are still in control and opt for a familiar setting like the family home, where you can both sit down with a cuppa and have a meaningful chat.

Knowing what’s available

It helps to familiarise yourself with what the services home care providers can offer before you sit down with your loved one. Enrich Living Services provides an extensive range of in home and aged care services, allowing you to pick and choose the services to suit your parent’s individual needs. Some of the better known services include help around the house and garden, meal and nutrition help, transport, clinical and nursing services, and social visits and outings.

Whatever your parent’s lifestyle and healthcare requirements, there are a variety of support options available to them. It’s important to remember that you are not limited by the services listed and have the option to completely tailor services according to your family’s needs.

Don’t forget about yourself

If you are caring for a parent, it’s important to take time for yourself. It can be a demanding role and taking a break from your caring duties is essential to ensuring your well being and to help you to continue to support your loved one. At Enrich Living Services, we have a number of respite services to give you a break. We’ve also developed this Carer’s Guide to help you along the way.

The next step

Our fully customisable services are available under Government subsidised programs or private care options. We have a range of informative guides available to help you get started, or contact us to learn more about your options today.

A Carer's Guide

Tips for an easier conversation about home care services