It can be taxing to be a caregiver from far away, but it’s something that can be remarkably effective. If your elderly family member is still doing a lot on her own, you may want to set up a communication plan that helps you to stay in touch with her and to keep informed about what she has going on.
Iron out a Plan for Communicating Regularly
You and your senior need to make an actual plan for communication. This might sound a bit restrictive, but it will give you both structure that you can lean on when you need to. Your plan can be as simple as agreeing on the ways you’ll communicate as well as days and times of day that work for both of you. This doesn’t have to be just about checking up on your senior, either. You can use this communication plan to ensure you’re both available, especially if you both have busy schedules.
One Compromise Might Involve Extra Hands-on Help
You might be expecting certain things in terms of knowing what’s going on with your senior and her life, while she may have expectations on her side of the equation, too. One way you can compromise is to agree that senior care providers can give your senior hands-on help. This helps to ensure that your elderly family member has the help when she needs it and that you have confirmation that she’s actually doing well.
Use Technology to Your Advantage
Technology can do a lot these days, including help you to stay on top of how your senior is really doing. With video chatting, you’re able to see for yourself when she’s looking healthy, when she seems to be in a good mood, and when things just don’t look right. There are other tools you might consider using, too, like personal alarm systems or fitness trackers that help you both to stay on target with your senior’s goals.
Stay Calm if Things Aren’t Completely Going to Plan
If things aren’t going completely according to the plan you and your senior have set up, there may not be a bad reason for that. Getting worked up right then isn’t going to serve you or your senior well. When you do get in touch with her, it’s going to be far better if you’re in a calm frame of mind because that could easily send the conversation in a negative direction and you don’t want that.
Balancing your need for information and your senior’s need for independence is really important. The easiest way to do that is to make sure you both know what the other expects, especially in terms of communicating.