My dad is 83 with Parkinson's. He lives oversees and is too proud to ask for help. How do we offer this without him feeling pitied?

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I want to visit and use family medical leave from work, but he is insulted about having to ask his physician to fill out a form re his symptoms and/or help he needs.

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Top Answer
Tell him you just want a vacation, and this is the only way you can get time off.

Tell him you have questions for his doctor, and get him to sign the privacy form so the doctor can talk to you. Then YOU ask the doctor to fill out the form.

Go around. Be economical with the truth. Fib. Wheedle. Tell him you're making yourself sick worrying. Ask "Don't you love me, Daddy? Don't you want to see me?"

People can be stubborn and proud. Good luck.
Helping someone who is still able ot make their own decisions requires that they trust you. Going behind his back is not likely to facilitate that. It also requires that you allow them the dignity of making their own decisions even when you don't agree with them.

Perhaps you can explain your concern, tell him you would simply like to come and see for yourself and reassure him that you won't interfere with his decisions. Don't attempt to manipulate him, it's bound ot backfire.
Parkinson's doesn't rob the mind, just the body, so we're assuming he can still make all his own decisions. If that is indeed the case and his mind is quite healthy, going behind his back could drive a wedge between the two of you. However, if he is having mental issues, I agree that you get to him by whatever means is necessary, including going behind his back. You have to be sure of his mental state before you proceed, but how do you proceed without knowing how he is? You're caught on an out-of-control merry-go-round. I feel for you.

Asking your Dad to help you get a vacation because you're worried about him might not be the right way to go, but asking your Dad to fill out the form because you miss him so much and that you are in dire need of a vacation seems like a better route to go. Ask him to tell his doctor that you are over-stressing about him which is in turn over-stressing him (a huge detriment to his health is stress). If your Dad asks the doctor to fill out the form so your DAD can get some peace... then your Dad is doing something for you and doesn't look weak to himself. Once you're there, you can better access the situation. Does he have other family members nearby that he can turn to should he need them? You might also ask him what his future long term plan is and ask if he's willing to move in with you should he need to. Be sure to stress future long term so he doesn't think you're jumping the gun on him. It's all in the presentation, so good luck! And let us know how he's doing (and how you're doing). You deserve peace of mind.
He wants to take responsibility for himself, and -- guess what -- you can take responsibility for YOURSELF. "I'm coming to visit you because YOU need it" is precisely what he doesn't want.... and it's also not quite true. "I'm coming to visit you because I want to see you" is frankly truer. It's not manipulative because it's honest -- if you own that fact. You ARE doing it for you. (You're the one who's worried, right?) And you know what else? He doesn't get to stop you. I mean, he can refuse to open the front door, he can refuse to see you, but you're a grownup too: if you want to get on a plane and travel to Timbuctu, that's your choice. If it comes to something like, you want to hire someone to go clean his house or whatever, then his refusing to open the front door becomes a bigger issue. But you still frame it the same way: "I'm hiring someone to come once a week to clean for you because it's making me crazy that I can't do it myself. It's a gift from me to me, and I'd be so grateful if you'd understand that." The point I'm trying to make is that this framing is actually TRUE. It's everybody taking ownership of what's really going on for them.

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