At some point in life most of us concede that our grown children are adults and turn over their management to themselves. But what happens when it becomes necessary for the adult child to parent the elderly parent? Who decides when that cross-over point is reached?
Some Seniors recognize when they are slipping cognitively and have prepared themselves for asking for and receiving help from their children, but they are the rare ones. More often, it comes about involuntarily during or after a crisis. What I’ve seen happen is the adult child decides that the parent must no longer live on her own but needs to be uprooted from her home and placed in an Assisted Living Facility, with or without the parent’s cooperation. This sort of decision is perhaps more apt to be made by a child who lives far away…problem encountered – problem solved.
But look at it from the perspective of the parent faced with being uprooted. Is it really necessary for her to be torn away from all that is familiar? Can another solution be found such as the use of technology to keep her safe and adjust for memory glitches? The end result may indeed be moving to a care facility, but giving the parent time to make the transition gradually by remaining in her home for a few more months or years benefits her greatly as long as she is safe.
I have been puzzling this out because of a situation in my own family where I can see both sides of the situation.