Making Parents Part of the Aging Process Now
Making the time to talk to family members about the aging process gives everyone a chance to have an opinion about what things should happen under various aging circumstances. Most people wait until the needs arise before they sit down and communicate with each other about important aging issues.
Statistics show that 34 percent of adults avoid having important end-of-life conversations with parents or children. This leads to confusion, disappointment and miscommunication about what should be done, which then adds to an already stressful situation.
Researchers have developed a simple 40-70 plan, which basically means that adult children who have reached the age of 40 years and parents who are 70 years of age, should sit down as soon as possible and have critical conversations about the things that will likely impact the parents future as they age.
Researchers hope that by getting the word out to communities about making a 40-70 plan, frustration will decrease when serious aging issues begin to arise.
Amy Hull owns the Home Instead Senior Care office in Knoxville, TN and speaks out about the concerns that are raised when people wait too long to plan for their futures, “Unfortunately, it is often not until a crisis happens that families consider these important discussions. Although the prospect of addressing sensitive topics can often be intimidating, it’s critical for these conversations to happen before it’s too late,” states Hull who also advocates for the 40-70 plan.
The whole goal of the 40-70 plan is to decrease the likelihood of family disputes as the aging process begins to require intervention by loved ones. “Quite often, when it comes to certain topics, there is a noticeable gap between the wishes of the senior parents and their children,” Hull states. “We want to help families establish plans in advance so that a parent’s expressed wishes are met.”