The Toughest Conversations You'll Ever Have...With Your Parents

3:19 PM, Jul 17, 2013   |    comments
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Greensboro, NC --  For 24 hours, WFMY is focusing on kids and their parents. More specifically, adult children and their aging parents.

In every newscast, you'll learn something about this change of life. From how to deal with this life change emotionally, to how to deal with it legally.

We've compiled a list of resources you can check out right now.  

Sunday 11pm -- TAKING CARE OF MOM

This is the story of Marybeth Gentry and her mom. It's a story that is common around the world, and heartbreaking just the same.

"My mom isn't 'mom' anymore," says Marybeth. When Marybeth moved her mom down to NC, she never dreamed it would have turned out like this.

Her mom can no longer drive and many days, she can't remember key memories of her life. Marybeth's mom lives in an assisted living care facility. She wonders how long that will last and how her life, and the life of her family will change as her mom's needs change.

Elder Law Issues & Power of Attorney

Elder law attorney A. Frank Johns of Booth Harrington & Johns says, "The Power of Attorney form is so powerful, if you're not sure how it works or who you gave it to, it can ruin your life!"

There are several different kinds of Power Of Attorney. But the two main ones are: financial and healthcare.

Johns says while you can a Power Of Attorney document without a lawyer, he strongly recommends a lawyer be present so every family member is held accountable.

Look at Johns'  website and blog dealing with Elderly and Aging Issues here. 

Elder Law Issues & How To Have "The Talk"

This is one of the hardest things to do, admits A. Frank Johns of Booth Harrington & Johns. But he also says it's one of the most important. Before mom or dad had a health crisis, have "the talk" concerning future care needs, where they want to live, how they want to be taken care of and how they want their assets to be handled.

Johns gives a few tips on how to start "The Talk".

Monday 6:45am -- Dealing With Caregiver Emotions & Long Distance Care

Renee Griffin, of Senior Resources of Guilford, and the daughter of aging parents herself joined the Good Morning Show to talk about the emotions caregivers can go through.

Griffin says it's not unusual to go through everything from saddness over losing the parents you know, to anger over the situation and guilt over what you are doing or not able to do.

She also talks about how to care for a loved one long distance and what to do if your parent resists your help.

Monday 7:15am -- Get Help From Your Local Senior Services Agency

Need a third party to help with "The Talk" but dn't know where to turn? Ellen Whitlock of Senior Resources of Guilford says contact your local senior services agency. They can help with "The Talk" as well as pointing you in the right direction for services, meals, transportation and other supports.  In Guilford County, call 333-6981.

Monday 5pm -- The One Mistake Most Families Make

It's all about planning for the future. Why the balance of emotions and business is so sensitive and so very important. Plus, why feeling angry over caregiving duties may not be politically correct, but it's real!

Monday 6pm -- When It's Time For Mom & Dad To Stop Driving

Driving is an identity status. It's is freedom that most people don't want to give up. But when should you or your parent stop driving? Should you spy on your parent? AARP's Suzanne Lafollette-Black says don't spy on them, but you should ride with them now and then!

Black says start talking with your parent before you think it's going to be an issue. If it's too late for that, bring up the topic respectfully, and have solutions to how they are going to get around without a car.AARP has driving seminars you can take on-line and in a city near you! 

Monday 11pm -- The 3 Key Decisions You Need To Make Now!

Frances and Jim Ward cared for their parents. They'll tell you, they had no freedom and they didn't want to pass that down to their kids. So the couple made three key decisions.

#1 Where To Live. Jim & Frances picked a CCRC (continuing care retirement community) which allows them to live in their own home now, but with the promise they can move into assisted living for skilled care later on. Whether you pick this option, or to stay at home with caregivers coming in, or living with a family member, you need to plan for how meals, healthcare and transportation will be provided.

#2 How To Pay For It?  Retirement pays for some things. But if you need nursing home care, assisted living care or hospice, you'll probably need another income source. Check out Long Term Care Insurance. If you start paying at age 45, the premium is $1,200 for $72,000 worth of coverage a year. If you wait until 60, the premium jumps to $2,300.

#3 Power of Attorney. This document allows the person of your choice to pay bills, take care of your estate and make healthcare choices for you...when you can't. Experts say, this is where many people have issues. But without a POA, if the parent becomes unable to take care of their finances, the family will have to go through a lot of red tape to help them.


WFMY News 2

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