When a family is faced with caring for an aging loved one, it is not uncommon for the issues of money and inheritance to create tension among siblings.
Disagreements are inevitable, but they do not have to mar relationships forever. It is important to acknowledge that families have problems and that everyone comes from a less-than-perfect family.
Sibling relationships are often the longest of our lives, lasting 80 years or more. And while several research studies reveal that up to 45 percent of adults have an emotionally charged or distant relationship with a sibling, the caregiving dynamic can either polarize relationships or bond siblings closer together.
With that in mind, consider the following tips to help you and your siblings find a new and improved way to interact and to face caregiving as a team.
Try to let go of the “winning” attitude: In a battle of wills or differences of opinion, the ultimate goal of both parties is to win. Being harsh and critical is only going to lead to hurt feelings and to alienating your sibling. If you operate on the my-way-or-the-highway premise, you are likely to end up with less-involved siblings.
Develop a thicker skin: That is not to say you have to be tough as nails, but being able to take constructive suggestions or even criticism can help with trust. Instead of everyone tiptoeing around one another, learning to talk openly and kindly can strengthen the sibling bond during the difficult caregiving years.
Indirect communication can be really damaging. Try to discuss touchy subjects in an open, honest and nice way.
Approach caregiving as a team: It is very likely that one sibling will be the primary caregiver. However, it really does take a village of family and friends to provide good and sensible care.
To keep the relationship healthy, the primary caregiver needs to be able to have support, get breaks and depend on the rest of the care team to pitch in.
A daily check-in call could be the lifeline, the joy you give someone that makes the biggest difference in their perception of what old age is like.
Contact me at 317-480-1038 today. Let’s make a difference together.
I’m Diana Beam, Founder of Keeping in Touch Solutions. It is my heartfelt desire for every person to live a happy and healthy life in the place they call home, no matter what their age. You can’t put a price on peace of mind for your parents and yourself. It’s priceless . . . and significant.
For that reason, the goal of every Keeping In Touch Solutions program is to provide a caring connection and service that both the elderly and their caregivers can rely on to make living that good life easier.
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