Living at a distance from your aging parent can make the responsibilities of being their family caregiver more challenging.
You might find that you spend a considerable amount of time thinking about how you are going to fulfill your parent’s care needs when you live far from them. As you are considering this, however, it is extremely important that you also remember your parent’s need for validation and a sense of value. Showing them that you care about them and want to care for them because of your love for them is a vital part of supporting their mental and emotional health, well-being, and quality of life as they age in place.
Let these ideas inspire you in ways that you can show your parent that you care when you are a distance caregiver:
Call them each day. Even if you only speak to them for a few minutes, having this contact with them on a daily basis shows them that you are thinking about them. If both of you have the technology available, consider planning video chats so that your parent can see you during these talks. This has the additional benefit of letting you see your parent and using that to evaluate their condition
Talk about more than their care. While your care efforts and fulfilling their needs is an important priority for you, it shouldn’t be the only thing that you think about. Talking about what they have been doing, if they have done anything fun, if they have seen favorite television shows, or other topics that do not have to do with their care shows that you love them as individuals and that your relationship is about more than just your responsibilities toward them
Plan distance activities. You might not be able to spend time with your parent frequently, but that does not mean that you can’t enjoy activities together. Planning games that you can enjoy from a distance is a wonderful way to connect the two of you and to make your parent feel acknowledged and loved. For example, plan a scavenger hunt that your parent can go on in their area with the help of a home care provider. Check in with them when they find the targeted items and talk about them. They can then create a list for you
Being a family caregiver for an elderly adult can be challenging and stressful. Fortunately, home care can be a meaningful and valuable solution for your care routine. An in-home care services provider can step in to support your care efforts, fill care gaps, and provide services that you cannot handle on your own due to your own challenges and limitations or because you or your parent are not comfortable with you handling them. This care provider can also be a valuable source of companionship and support, offering your parent greater mental and emotional stimulation, boosting their mental and emotional health, and encouraging them to live a lifestyle that is more engaged and fulfilling as they age in place. This can offer you tremendous peace of mind as you know that they are getting all of the care that they need while also allowing you to focus on your own needs and other obligations and responsibilities in your life.