Leeza’s Caregiver Tip: Keep Your Family Together

Video Transcript

Hi, I’m Leeza Gibbons. I’d like to share a caregiver tip for Philips Lifeline.

When a parent or family member is getting older and you know you might need to make some important decisions, well, I can tell you from my experience it sort of feels like the family is falling apart. You probably wonder, “How on Earth can I keep it together?” Well, it is possible.

One way to do it is to just have a check-in moment. You know, maybe it’s something over family dinner. If you’re all in different parts of the country, that’s OK, we were too. You can use one of the free conference call services or Facetime or Skype. Any of those things that might be possible for you really work well. The idea is just to make sure that everybody in the scenario is present and that they all feel heard. You may not agree with everybody. Well that’s OK. That’s not as important as just making sure that you come to the table and share your emotions and your needs.

There’s always going to be somebody who’s in a different place than you. Somebody who’s in denial. Somebody who’s maybe creating conflict. You know that’s just the way it goes. But this is the time to go from conflict to consensus. You may not get everything you want, but you’ll get closer to the solution. That’s what’s really important.

You know when you get a cut, you know like a papercut or anything, physically all of your resources, your white blood cells, everything goes whoosh right there to take care of that wound. So when there’s an emotional wound in your family it makes sense that all of your energy reserves are going to go there too. Just try to be aware of that while it’s happening. And there are all these other people, the rest of the family unit, they all still need care and attention as well. So as much as you can come together. Don’t be afraid to admit your vulnerabilities and reach out for help, because you’re not alone.

For more caregiver advice and resources visit PhilipsLifeline.com.

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