It’s so difficult to find the right balance between not helping quite enough and taking over too much from your senior. All you want to do is to help and to make sure that she’s safe, but for your senior it can all feel like way too much.
Here are some ideas for getting back into balance.
Things Are Changing for Your Senior
It’s always important for you to remember that even though you may see your senior in much the same way as you have for a long time, things are definitely changing for her. She may have been someone in her prior life who didn’t ask for help ever but who was the helper for those around her. To experience the other side of that situation now may feel like too much to her. It’s an adjustment and it may take more time than either of you realize.
You Need to Be Able to Trust Each Other
At some point, this entire situation becomes about trust between you and your senior. She’s trusting that you’re going to allow her to do what she can, when she can. That might be the most important part to her in all of this. From your perspective, you may not trust that she’s going to let you help when she needs it or when you feel it’s necessary. It’s a delicate balancing act for both of you.
She Needs to Maintain the Independence She Has
It’s really important to allow your senior to hang onto the independence that she does still have. This might mean that she continues to make her own doctor’s appointments or handle specific tasks in her home on her own. When she does need a little bit of help, that doesn’t mean that she’s suddenly frail or that she can no longer do anything on her own.
Talk to Her about Letting Her Ask for Help
The easiest way to get through this is to talk to each other about what you both see as the important factors in this situation. Let her know that you’re willing to help at any time, but that you need her to let you know she needs the help. Having this conversation out in the open can help your senior to realize that you’re not trying to take over or keep her from living her life. It can help her to understand that she can be independent and still get some extra help.
Oddly enough, bringing homecare providers into the equation can bring the balance you’ve both been struggling to achieve. Homecare providers have experience in helping just enough to give your senior what she needs without overwhelming her.