|TAKING AUTHORITY OVER THE SITUATION
This is an important attitude that you must master to minimize frustration. They are your parents and should be honored and respected, but you must step up to the plate to provide loving leadership, now that their capacities and energies are diminished.
It's actually a role reversal. The child becomes the parent. It's a delicate situation. For some adult children, it's like walking through a mine field... especially if there are serious flaws in your relationship with your parents.
I'm thankful that my parents welcomed my leadership. During the eight years preceding the time they both became disabled, they were members of the church where I was the Pastor. They were proud of me and expressed it often. Even after I resigned my position to work on a special writing project, Dad introduced me as his son and his Pastor. Works for me, especially if it makes it easier for him to follow my advice.
It's not as though he never questioned my advice. Sometimes he would say, "I don't see why I have to do this... " But would quickly add, "...but if you insist, I will." One time he reacted angrily with me when I reminded him to take his cane for a walk. "I don't need it. I wish everyone would stop telling me to take it!" I didn't know Mom had been fussing at him about taking it. My input pushed him over the edge.
I could have backed off but I didn't. I walked over to him and I put my hand on his shoulder. He turned to look at me. I said in a calm but deliberate manner, "Dad, I can't let you talk to me that way. It's my job to care for you and see that you are safe. You must take your cane. It's not optional." He said he was sorry, hugged me, and took the cane. MORE>