What’s the most stressful thing we avoid talking about? Money.
It’s the number one cause of marital problems. It’s the number one cause of stress in our lives.
And it really doesn’t matter if we’re twenty-two or eight-two, money issues cause problems.
It’s also the number one family caregiver issue.
Talking about money is the most challenging chat we can have. And when we combine that with the stress from being put into a caregiving status as well, the stress builds.
In one of the wealthiest nations in the world, finances are always a challenge. We don’t want to be judged. We don’t want to be taken advantage of.
And historically, it’s not something that crosses the generational gap. We rarely heard our parents talking about money. And in most cases, finances were an almost secret discussion meant for private. Without role models, we have no one to look up to when conversations should be occurring. And so it remains a difficult topic.
But not talking about them won’t make them go away. And in fact, can make the situation worse. Talking about eldercare and financial stability throughout this process may not be easy, but it’s necessary. Talking about aging parents, financing medical care, looking at housing options, and graduating into funeral topics is never easy. But the more you plan for it, the more you take into account all members’ feelings, the easier it becomes at the most emotional times of life.
The best time to initiate a money conversation is right now.
If your parents are mentally competent, it can allow them to be a part of the process of making decisions that will impact them down the road. It can allow them to finalize decisions that are much more difficult under stressful times.
Emergencies can be avoided with a little bit of planning. Before caregiving enters your life, sit down and devise a plan with the entire family. Effective care means bringing everyone on board, making your wishes known, and putting a plan into action.
Once you start talking about it, you will realize that the process isn’t as difficult as you thought.