0:19 This morning on Today's family caring for your aging parents. Roughly 65 million people in the US are now family caregivers. It's an already challenging role that can become even more difficult during the holidays so the Today show asked psychotherapist and Care.com contributor Robi Ludwig to join them to talk about this growing population and what you can do.
0:39 This is the time of year when you go home, hang out with parents and aging family members and notice that they're grayer, moving slower, and their eyesight is failing. At what point do you step in?
0:58 If you have a concern, you should certainly follow up. Discuss it with family members and gather information. Care.com has a senior assessment quiz where people can go and spend 3 minutes to get on the right path because if you're starting to have the question, you're probably on to something. It's important to think about how you would want to be treated. One of the things we suggest you do after you determine someone in your family needs help is to gather the family together and think about what you need to do. Be sure to do it before the holiday so you can use the time together to observe if your aging loved one is having difficulty walking or the food in the refrigerator is expired. Be sure to weigh in- this should definitely be a collaborative process.
2:36 But remember, Christmas dinner is not the time to have a family meeting about it. Wait until after the holidays to approach your family member about care.
2:55 Not sure what to say? Try this: "I have a concern and I'm worried about you. I'm concerned about you being alone." This is an opportunity to meet your family member where they're at and get an idea of what they want for themselves.
3:12 This decision should happen in increments. Don't say "we're moving you to a nursing home tomorrow" but start by suggesting that a caretaker come to their home to help out with the cooking, cleaning or other household chores to see how that goes. You can find this type of caretaker on Care.com.