Finding a quality, safe service to provide help for an ailing parent can be a challenge. That's why over eleven years ago I started ACC Adult Home Care to raise the bar on the standard of in-home assisted living. Yet despite providing a reputable service with caring, compassionate, and diligent caregivers, I still found a common roadblock that kept those in need from availing themselves of our services: the elderly, ailing individuals themselves.
Refusing care is not uncommon. In order to help convince your parents or loved ones in need to accept the help, you must first understand why they are refusing. Often times the reason is that they feel as if the help is an intrusion. After all, they worked long and hard for their home. It is a place where they feel safe and have privacy. They may feel that someone coming into their home signals the end of their privacy, or even their dignity. In fact, I've found that the hardest barrier to overcome is the feeling of shame or embarrassment. They may not want to come to terms with their current situation, or they may feel like a burden. Identifying the specific reason will help you guide the conversation in the proper tone.
For example, let's say John Doe was a factory worker all his life. He prides himself on his consistent hard work. When John loses his mobility, he may feel a sense of embarrassment at the notion of someone helping him move around the house or while running errands. In this scenario, it takes a lot of reassurance to John that his hard work means that he's more than deserving of help in his times of challenge. He was there for his family, friends, and coworkers when they needed him. Now it's time for the favor to be returned.
Sometimes it can be as simple as coaching them along, guiding the conversation with a positive light. Other times, it can be much more difficult. In cases where it is a matter of feeling that their privacy is being encroached on, a big help is to start the process early and starting small. Easing the client into interactions with caregivers allows them to overcome initial fears and become more comfortable, not just with the caregivers themselves, but with the notion of accepting help altogether. In young age and old, small steps are very important.
It is crucial to be patient and understanding, which helps your parents or loved ones know that you are on their side. Providing them with options that they can choose gives them a sense of control during a time when they may feel like they are losing control. They fear being treated like a number, which is why placement in a nursing facility can be frightening. Choosing a service that focuses on loving care is precisely what they need and all the better when that care can be provided in their most comfortable environment: their home.
If you are looking for help, or just curious about how to start the process of procuring help for your loved ones, ACC Adult Home Care is here as a resource to you for making the process simple and effective.
Melva Sherwood, RN
Owner, ACC Adult Home Care
Melva Sherwood, RN