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Changing Expectations: When Kids Cannot Care for Elderly Parents

For years the majority of seniors have expected their adult children to care for them when the need arose. After all, parents spent 18+ years caring for their children – emotionally, physically, and financially – so it only makes sense that children return the favor. But is this always possible? Or reasonable?

As recent trends suggest, the answer is no. In fact, the baby boomer generation (those born between 1946 and 1964) might be the first generation unable to count on their adult children to care for them as they age. While families in the past were willing to pitch in to help – even expected to do so – society today has a different set of responsibilities and values. In addition, approximately one-third of grown children no longer live in the same area as their parents.

Where to Turn

If older baby boomers aren’t able to depend on their grown children, where will they turn for help? Experts predict more “nontraditional relationships” to form among seniors (think Golden Girls) where seniors will live communally. But these types of relationships may not always be enough, especially if health concerns become an issue. Fortunately, recent years have seen an increase in reputable home care agencies that are equipped with the latest technology – such as home care systems and home care software – to help keep seniors safe and sound in their own homes.

For seniors who don’t have children nearby, it is important to make preparations for their elder years well in advance. Such preparations may include:

• Deciding on a health care proxy
• Researching home care systems and home care software, such as ClearCare
• Appointing a trusted power of attorney

Planning ahead for elder care will eliminate frustration and confusion later on. Choosing a reliable home care provider – specifically one that offers ClearCare’s home care software – will allow seniors to maintain control of their future and independence.

Adapting to Changing Times

Becky Tiller grew up around all four of her grandparents, who often babysat her and her siblings. When Tiller’s grandparents’ health began to fail, Tiller’s parents were there to help. Tiller, now full grown, never had any children of her own. Without children or grandchildren to provide assistance, Tiller often wonders who will care for her when she’s older.

According to the National Center for Health Statistics, the percentage of childless couples increased from 2.4 percent in 1982 to 6.6 percent in 1995. Childless seniors face a unique set of challenges as they age, but need not worry that no one will be around to help when the time comes. Keys to success are planning ahead, and adapting to changing circumstances. With the help of innovative home care systems and home care software, such as provided by ClearCare, seniors can receive the support and assistance they need – whether they have family around or not. Dependable home care systems facilitate good communication between all care members, ensuring reliable scheduling and prompt resolution to patient concerns.

If you have questions about the value of home care systems and ClearCare’s home care software, contact one of our friendly representatives today. If you are childless and have concerns about your future, check out our post on The Challenges of Childless Seniors.

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