You're juggling family, friends and a job. Plus an aging parent who lives far away. How do you manage his or her care from a distance? And when should you visit?
Here are some questions to ask yourself from time to time. Dr. Jim McCabe, President of
Eldercare Resources, shared these at a presentation for the Certified Senior Advisors.
1. What do the local helpers (church people, neighbors, friends) say about Mom or Dad? Often their input is more objective than your parent's. He or she may minimize any problems, not wanting to worry you.
2. What is your parent's style: half full or half empty? This will color his or her perception of what is going on.
3. Can you afford a trip now?
4. Can you make arrangements for your family and work right now?
5. What if you delayed your visit and did not go?
McCabe advises that long distance caregivers work with a Geriatric Care Manager in the area where their parents live, and also connect with local resources such as senior centers, and the US Network on Aging.