Home › Forums › Family › My parents are starting to get older, and I want to help support them with healthy aging. What are some things that I should consider to best support them in this process? › Reply To: My parents are starting to get older, and I want to help support them with healthy aging. What are some things that I should consider to best support them in this process?
I think one of the best things that we can do for our aging parents is to sit down and have an honest conversation about their needs and desires as they age and as they are faced with serious health issues. Some questions to ask might be: What is most important to them? What are trade-offs they might be willing to make? What are things that they absolutely would not like for their life? It’s important to have these conversations early, and continue to check in with them as time passes as their needs/wants might change. Dr. Atul Gawande points out in his book Being Mortal, that we often make decisions for loved ones based off of our own needs and sense of what we think we ‘should’ do to preserve life. This can mistakenly leave the loved one’s voice out of conversation. I invite you to have an honest conversation with your aging parent, spouse, or loved one so that you are all clear on what matters most so that you can use this information to help guide important health decisions and treatment options.