As we grow older, so do our parents, and while the actual amount of years between us and them remains the same, at a certain point in our thirties, the gap starts to shrink in relation to our parents viewing us as a peer and vice versa. The instance of this is a blessing and something that we should look upon as a positive thing. This marks a new phase in our relationship with our parents, and it can serve as a vehicle to bring us closer together. With them viewing us as a peer, though, comes a new level of comfort with us that they may not have had before. As a result, they may open up to us in ways that we may not be prepared for. In this blog, we will look at a few examples of these kinds of scenarios, and examine just how you, the child, can handle them. At Your Healing Touch, it is our goal to provide you and your loved ones with the best elder care in the greater Indianapolis area. Contact us via phone or email today for more information on how we can help your parent or loved one live their lives happily and respectfully.
Talking About Death
Whether or not your parent is in a state of good health, as we grow older, we begin to become more conscious of our own mortality. While this may be a difficult subject to discuss with your parent or loved one, it’s important to not be dismissive of them bringing it up. More than anything, your loved one feels comfortable talking about something as serious as death with you, and you need to respect that they are opening up to you about this rather sensitive subject. Be attentive, listen, and bring up positives. Be it good health, or the many accomplishments that they’ve achieved, or just general things to be thankful for. This will certainly make a conversation about a difficult subject far easier.
Talking About Romance and Sex
When we were younger, our parents had figure out how to talk to us about sex and love. A difficult task indeed, you may experience a role reversal with our parents wanting to talk to us about their love life. Surely, this will be a bit awkward, but there are ways to talk about these things with our parents that are pleasant and not awkward. Chances are, they aren’t going to talk about these sorts of things in a way that’s going to make you uncomfortable. If they are single or widowed, chances are, they just miss the overall companionship of romance. Them bringing this up and expressing this to us is a sign that, again, they view us as a peer and someone with insight who can give them advice and consolation.
Talking About Seemingly Mundane Things
We’re all guilty of it–talking about things of little to no substance for no reason at all whatsoever. It’s something of a cliche, really-the elderly parent talking to their obviously uninterested child who is barely listening to what they have to say. Not only is this disrespectful to the person who raised you, but let’s not forget the fact that there was a time when we were much younger and talked just to talk. In some cases, we’d talk about anything and everything, asking questions around the clock. Our parents happily engaged in conversations with us because they loved us. Even if they didn’t understand what we were talking about, they sat and talked with us about our toys, imaginary friends, friends at school or completely insignificant problems that we may have been experiencing at the time. Flash forward to today, and it would be highly insensitive and hypocritical of us to be irritated or annoyed by our parents talking to us about soap operas, everyday happenings in their neighborhood or community gossip. They were incredibly patient with us, now it’s our turn to be patient with them.
Sharing Private Details About Their Lives
Whether it’s about infidelity, an issue with substances or some other subject that they may not be proud of, there are things about our parents lives that we had no idea about. In the case of them having done something that they may not be proud of, chances are, this is something that they have struggled with for years, and having them talk to us about it, in a way, is their way of confronting their past, admitting that they made a mistake and hopefully moving on from it. This is not a time for you to judge them; like everything else, this was brought up out of comfort.
Continuing to “Parent” Us
Once a parent, always a parent, right? For some of us, no matter how old we get, our parents will always be our parents and will always continue to give us unwarranted advice on our jobs, romantic partners, friends, and just about anything that they feel the need to address. While this can certainly be a bit irritating at times, we have to realize that this isn’t them judging us or thinking that we are incapable of making good decisions, it comes from a place of love, care and concern. We owe our lives to our parents, so if we have to deal with a little bit of judgment from time to time, in the long run, it’s a small price to pay.
Growing older is always an adjustment, not only for the parent but for the child watching the parent age as well. Times like these can be trying, but it’s important to remember that the time we spend with our parents as adults is as important as the time we spent with them as children. Always remember, our parents love us and want nothing more than to remain close to us, the children that they raised. For all of your elder care needs in the greater Indianapolis area, look no further than Your Healing Touch. We are here to help your parent continue to live their lives happily and independently. For more information, email us or give us a call today.