Caring for Elderly Parents

At some point in time, many adult children shift roles and become caregiver to a parent. It’s natural to hope that a parent is safe and happy in their golden years, however without proper future planning, children are often left in the unexpected and sometimes unwanted role of family caregiver. When an aging loved one’s health begins to fail, families are often confronted by some very challenging decisions.

As adults live longer, adult children are more often involved in their parents' long-term care decisions. Progressive diseases like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s can last for years, so what may start as a response to some simple requests for assistance sometimes evolves into a full-time caregiving role that costs family caregivers physically, financially and emotionally.

Whether new to caring for a parent or looking for signs that it is time to bring in outside assistance, AgingCare has resources to help. Browse our collection of care guides, expert articles and Q&A about caring for elderly parents. Find insight and support in AgingCare’s Caregiver Forum from a vibrant community of caregivers with valuable experience in the joys and challenges of caring for aging loved ones.

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Frequently Asked Questions about Parents

Q: Can I get paid for caring for my elderly parents?
The vast majority of family caregivers do not get paid to care for an elderly loved one. However, there are a few options available that may allow a family member to receive payment. Read: How Can I Get Paid for Being a Family Caregiver?
Q: Should I quit my job to care for my elderly parents?
Explore the benefits and costs of quitting a job for caregiving. Read: Should You Quit Your Job to Care for Your Elderly Parent?
Q: How do I talk about future plans with my aging parents?
There are some simple guidelines that you and your family can follow now that can help to ease the role transition from adult child to caregiver. Explore: 10 Tips for Successful Conversations about Future Care
Q: Should my elderly parent move in with me?
Multi-generational living can have serious implications, and there are a number of factors that are often overlooked that must be taken into consideration first. Read More: Should Your Elderly Loved One Move in with You?
Q: What to do when siblings don't agree on care decisions for aging parents?
Issues between brothers and sisters often come to a head when a parent begins requiring care. Read More: Resolving Sibling Issues While Caring for Parents
Q: How do I deal with angry, stubborn parents?
Caregivers often deal with unusual, unruly and embarrassing behavior from their care recipients. Seniors faced with a loss of independence often lash out against their caregivers. For tips on coping, read: Dealing with an Elderly Parent’s Bad Behavior
Q: Can POA block me from seeing my parents?
Power of attorney designations are often used (abused) to limit a family member’s access to a parent. In most cases, restricting visitors is beyond the scope of POA. Read: Can POA prevent me from visiting my mother?