When your senior parent loses a spouse it’s the start of an incredibly difficult time for that parent. If you’re a caregiver to your remaining parent it’s important to understand how grief can impact your senior loved one and to know how you can support them through the grieving process.
It’s difficult for you to grapple with the loss of a parent, but your senior parent must now face the prospect of aging alone which is scary and unfamiliar. Some things that you can do to provide support for your senior loved one as they grieve are:
Help Establish A New Routine
One of the hardest adjustments your senior parent will have to make after losing a spouse is the loss of their routine. For some seniors this could be a routine they have had for thirty, forty, or even more years. Try to help your parent establish a new routine by meeting them to go for a walk at a certain time each day or visiting them at a certain time each day. Anything that you can do to help them build a new routine will make it a little easier for them.
Get Help With The Basics
While your senior parent is grieving, they may be too emotionally and physically wrung out to deal with household chores. At home care providers who visit on a regular basis can take care of household chores like dusting, vacuuming, laundry, and doing the dishes so that your senior loved one won’t have to worry about getting all of those chores done. Home care providers can also help establish a new routine for your senior parent by coming by the house on a regular basis to help out with housework and other tasks.
Encourage Them To Get Support From Others
It’s important that your senior parent get some support from other people who have also gone through the experience of losing a spouse. You can encourage your senior parent to join a support group for seniors that have lost their spouses or to get professional counseling. Talking about their loss and getting some guidance as they move through the grieving process will help them navigate the tricky waters of grief more easily. And because you will be going through your own grieving process you may not be able to be there for your senior parent in the capacity they need.
Talk, Share, and Remember Together
Even though you both will be going through your own individual grief journeys you can come together often to talk about the loved one that you both lost and enjoy the memories and stories about all of the years that you shared with that person. Talking about them may help with your grief and your remaining parent’s grief. You may even want to write down all of the stories you remember about that person so that you and your senior parent will be able to look through the book and smile at all the shared memories you have.
If you or an aging loved one are considering home care in Glenview, IL, contact the caring staff at Companion Services of America today at (847) 943-3786. Our home care service area includes Northbrook, Highland Park, Deerfield, Glenview, Buffalo Grove, Evanston, Des Plaines, Skokie, Lake Forest, Wilmette and the surrounding areas.
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