As your parents get older, they develop mobility difficulties. According to science, it’s common for people above the age of 65 to lose some of their sense of balance and co-ordination. The most common reason for this outcome is underlying conditions and medications.
Interestingly, your mum or dad will never admit that they need help because they don’t want to be called old. Human beings are proud, and your parents are no exception. Despite their stubbornness, you still want to help them because they’re your parents. How can you help them without damaging their pride and reputation?
- Have Empathy
Let your parents know that you want to help them because you genuinely care for their well-being. Ask them how they feel about the current situation. Listen and empathize with them. When you show genuine compassion, they will be more willing to accept the mobility devices.
- Treat Them like Adults
Just because your parent forgets things and has trouble walking doesn’t mean they are incapable of decision making. They raised you until you became a financially independent adult; it takes a lot of wisdom to do that. Therefore, don’t force your parents to use mobility devices because you’re paying for their treatment. Instead, tell them about their options and give them time to decide. They’ll be extremely grateful for the gesture and as a thank you, they may reciprocate by accepting your help.
- Reassure Them
Parents never want to feel like a burden to their children. That’s one of the reasons they don’t want to accept your help. As you make the request, tell them they’re not a burden. You’re there to help each other out like normal adults. Remind them that aging is a natural process and as people get old, they develop difficulty doing certain things. You are there to help them do those difficult tasks.
- Provide Examples
Your parents are very proud of their accomplishments, including you. They started from nothing and built a life together. After all they’ve been through, they know they will be fine because mobility problems are just another challenge. To get through to them, give them examples of close friends that have accepted help. That will make them lower their pride and be more receptive to your help.
- Allow Them to Retain Control
Your parents don’t want help because they have some concerns. Unless you’re really close, they won’t tell you those concerns. You see, your parents have always been one the one to give you advice. They fear telling you their concerns because it may lead to switching of roles.
Your parents are afraid of change. That’s why you should be transparent about everything. Reassure them that no one is going to live with them at the house if they don’t want company. Invest in mobility aids that allow them to regain some sort of control.
- Involve a Professional
It’s not going to be easy to convince your parents to accept help. The process can take weeks or months. Despite their stubbornness, you cannot give up on them. You have to keep trying until they accept your help.
One way to do that is to strike a bargain. If they accept to go to the doctor and pass a balance test, you won’t bother them. But if they fail the test, they have to accept your help. It’s a fair trade.
Alternatively, you can invite a medical professional to your house to help convince your parents. They’ll be more qualified to explain the mobility options to your parents. Also, since they’re a neutral third party, it could be hard for your parents to say no.
To conclude, use the above tips to encourage your parents to use mobility devices. As you do so, be patient with them because they are going to be stubborn. Keep trying until they accept your offer.