If you’ve landed on our website, you might be looking for some information on the care options available for a loved one. A topic that we’re very familiar with is the uncomfortable one of having difficult conversations with a loved one who needs but doesn’t want any help.
How do you broach the topic? How do you stay calm and try to gently convey that you’re just trying to help by getting them some support?
These conversations can be very difficult but they are so important, so make sure you keep reminding yourself that you are doing it for the best interests of your loved one. We know it’s never going to be ‘easy’ but here are our top 10 tips to make these types of conversations as smooth as they can be.
1. Do Some Initial Research Into Home Care
Before you dive into the conversation, do a bit of homework. What’s Home Care all about? What services are available? Having this knowledge will give you a solid foundation for the discussion and help answer any questions that pop up.
There are three types of Home Care available in Australia; the Commonwealth Home Support Program, Home Care Packages, and privately-funded Home Care. Learn more about the various types of Home Care here.
There is a lot of Home Care information out there and it can be rather confusing. If you want to skip the hours of scrolling through blog after blog and speak with one of our friendly Home Care experts.
2. Your Loved One Still Has A Meaningful Contribution To Make
One of the biggest fears and reasons for resistance to Home Care is the loss of independence. Reassure your loved one that Home Care is there to enhance their life (and in fact, often increases their independence), rather than take over. They’re still the captain of their own ship and some extra support at home only helps them to keep doing all of the things they love to do for as long as possible.
3. Listen Respectfully To Their Concerns
These conversions must always be a two-way street, so try to keep your ears open. Listen properly to their worries, fears, and concerns because sometimes people just need to feel heard. By actively listening, you’re creating a safe space for them to express themselves and if you’ve done your research, you’ll be able to allay a lot of these fears.
4. Be Compassionate And Understanding
Approach the conversation with an open heart and a big dose of compassion. Acknowledge their feelings and be understanding – it can be a very scary and confronting time in life, so try not to make them feel like they are being silly. Showing empathy goes a long way in making your loved one feel supported.
5. Discuss The Benefits Of Quality Home Care Services
Highlight the good things! Turn the spotlight on the positives by discussing how quality Home Care services can make daily life easier, safer, and more enjoyable. It’s not about what they might lose but what they stand to gain.
6. Seek Support To Have The Conversation If Needed
Sometimes, bringing in reinforcements can be a game-changer. If you feel the need, seek support from other family members, your loved one’s regular doctor, a counselor, or a friend who has experience with these discussions.
The team at CareAbout can be your support from afar, too. We are here if you or your loved one would like to ask any questions or seek advice. Our service is absolutely free for you.
7. Pick Your Home Care Provider With Care
Not all Home Care providers are the same, and the provider that suits one person doesn’t always suit the next. Home Care is a very personal thing and everyone’s needs and preferences are different, so finding a provider that aligns with your loved one’s is vital.
That’s what we do at CareAbout! We’re here to learn absolutely everything about what you’re looking for in a provider and then match your loved one with a provider that’s going to meet their needs.
8. Choose The Right Time And Place
Timing really does matter. Conversations such as these require a time when everyone is calm and collected. It is often a highly emotional time and the need for the conversation may be triggered by a particular event. In these moments, it can be difficult not to launch straight into the discussion, however we would urge you not to do this. Take the time to step back, prepare, and approach it when you are not emotional.
Find a comfortable spot, free from distractions, where you can chat without time constraints. Creating the right atmosphere for an open conversation will be more likely to lead to a better result.
9. Try Combinations Of Direct And Indirect Approaches
There’s no one-size-fits-all approach to these talks. Mix it up! Use a combination of direct and indirect approaches to see which might work best. If you have some, use personal stories and examples of people you know who have already entered the world of Home Care.
10. Be Prepared And Open To Have Multiple Conversations
The first conversation may not go to plan and that’s okay. Perhaps it wasn’t the right moment or setting. Keep trying! Often, people just need some time and space to reflect themselves and to start rolling the idea around in their own head. Your second conversation may go much better but if not, don’t give up!
It can be very beneficial to have a third party involved in the conversation, so if you’d like CareAbout to explain the Home Care system and the services available, speak with one of our friendly Advisers. Simply give us a call today on 1300 536 707 and get expert support at ZERO cost to you.