Losing a loved one is never easy. The ones we love become so much a part of us, that losing them is like losing a piece of ourselves.
This feeling is amplified when the lost loved one is a spouse. You’ve lost your partner, your soulmate, your companion. You’ve lost your other half.
If your elderly parent is going through this kind of loss, how do you as a their child help them through this tough time?
Be Patient And Sympathetic – These two words will be the most important ones to remember during this time. Your parent desperately needs someone right now to help them pick up the pieces of their life. You can help them by being there for them with a patient and sympathetic ear.
Help with the paperwork – There is a lot of paperwork associated with the loss of a loved one. Not only will your parent have the funeral arrangements, but as the dust begins to settle, they will have to deal with the transition from two to one. Any assets (the house, the car, etc.) will need to reflect the loss. Similarly, bank accounts, wills, and insurance will have to be adjusted.
Help with the housework – Where there were once two to share the duties, now there is one. Ask your parent if they need help with the extra work. In some cases, your elderly parent may not know how to perform the new tasks. If this is the case, they will need a patient teacher.
Help with the day to day – Finding a new routine will likely be difficult for your elderly parent. Do what you can to help keep them healthy (eating right, sleeping, etc.) and help them find new ways to fill their days. You could suggest new routine outings with friends, a new hobby, or even a new pet.
Most of all, your parent will need your love and support. They need to know you are there for them, now that their closest friend is gone.