In this timely book, family counselors Gerald and Marlene Kaufman urge adult children and their parents to have direct conversations about the decisions that lie ahead as parents age.
Believing that forthright discussions lead to greater peace and harmony for all, the Kaufmans put pointed questions and topics on the table. Some are for parents, some are for adult children, some are for both together:
• Who starts and when? How to begin the conversation when not everyone is convinced it’s necessary.
• What caregiving plan can we all agree on?
• Who do we all trust to help make financial decisions, from within the family and from outside?
• What to do when Mom and Dad don’t agree about their future plans?
• What to do when siblings don’t agree about their parents’ futures?
• A retirement community or aging in place? What’s possible? What’s best?
• Who helps to make medical decisions?
• What to do when you’re not able to talk about end-of-life concerns?
Necessary Conversations is filled with stories and examples from many families, most with different life circumstances, but all facing these same issues.
The chapters end with “Getting Started,” a list of suggestions for action, as well as “Questions” for focusing on practical outcomes to the discussions.
The book includes a series of exhibits—from a “Needs Assessment for Caregivers” to a “Medications and Supplements List” to a “Driving Contract and Checklist.”
A thoughtful and useful guide to a life stage that’s often dreaded and muddled through.
Sooner or later, we all ought to have family conversations about the decisions that lie ahead as our parents age. Believing that forthright discussions lead to greater peace and harmony for all, the authors of Necessary Conversations, Gerald W. Kaufman and L. Marlene Kaufman, have created forms for families to complete regarding parents' care. Feel free to print them for your personal and your family's use.