When Siblings Disagree About a Senior Living Transition

By Michelle Seitzer / Posted on 05 December 2011

Gathering with family for the holidays is not a joyous occasion in homes where strained relationships between siblings and parents reside; the added stress of the season often exacerbates these tensions, and if there is concern about a parent’s health and well-being, things may reach a boiling point.

As many decisions about senior care are driven by a family member’s concerns following a holiday visit, ‘tis the season for sibling rivalry yet again. Fighting over new toys is (hopefully) a thing of the past, but in the present, adult children caring for aging parents encounter a different kind of battleground.

As always, the final decision should rest with the senior who will be receiving home care, moving to assisted living, or making any other senior living transition; to keep this goal foremost, brothers and sisters should not let their feelings about their own relationships cloud the process.

Ideally then, siblings should resolve any issues they have with one another before entering into conversations about what is best for their parents. An elder care mediator, geriatric care manager or unbiased third-party may be an invaluable resource in fostering what is already a difficult conversation and process outside of complex family dynamics. Read more about these professionals here.

There are 2 Comments about this post

  1. Jan .wooster says,

    Sometime children of older parents,got to think that even those they are aging & health is declining.
    With health problem that can affect the whole family,maybe they want to handle their health in their own way.


    on 11 December 2011 / 10:59 PM

  2. Thanks for your comment, Jan. It is important to remember that even when an issue affects the entire family, the individual still has the right to make decisions.


    on 12 December 2011 / 10:52 AM


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