Sun, 21 December 2008
This weekend I rented an excellent movie entitled "The Savages". Starring Philip Seymour Hoffman, Laura Linney and Philip Bosco, it is the story of a brother and sister, estranged from their father, who receive a call when Dad's girlfriend, whom he has been living with for 20 years, dies.
Dad has dementia and the children are told by his girlfriend's children that they must take Dad back with them since the home is not his. They fly him back to New York and place him in a nursing home.
The story deals with the relationships of the characters, the upheaval of their lives and the typical issues that we all must deal with, from finding the right long term care setting to sitting down with Dad to discuss his living will and burial arrangements to the conflicting emotions felt by the children who are trying to do the right thing.
The film even touches upon second marriages (or in this case a long term relationship). The children are stunned to learn that Dad has no right to live in the home because he signed an agreement waiving all rights. Having little money, his children must place him in a nursing home and apply for Medicaid.
The movie is both funny and sad but it is comforting to know that we all, regardless of wealth, cannot escape the issues of aging and dying and that sometimes the experience can bring families closer together.
Category:Aging -- posted at: 8:45pm EDT
Thu, 4 December 2008
Elder Law Today Podcast Show #12 The Talk - How to Communicate with your Parents about Aging and Long Term Care
In show number 12 Yale Hauptman, a practicing elder law attorney sits down with Barbara Salvador of Nannymama.com and Barbara Friesner of Agewiseliving.com, a generational coach and author of “The Ultimate Caregiver’s Guide” to discuss how to have “the talk” with aging parents.
Generational differences and lack of communication pose some real challenges to children who are trying to help care for their parents. So many families never discuss long term care and finances until a crisis hits and that’s just too late. If you find yourself in the situation of not knowing what plans your parents have in place, what their wishes are with respect to long term care, or where all their important legal documents are – and you have no idea how to start the conversation - this is a must listen.
As with any interpersonal relationship, communication is paramount. How we say things is as important as the content itself. Yale and his guests discuss the best way to break the ice and the dos and don’ts of approaching a very difficult topic in a way that is sensitive to the fears and concerns of aging family members, intending to bring families together, instead of pulling them apart.
This 12th show contains valuable information that every family will find helpful in dealing with some of the most challenging issues we all face today.
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