Though we might age at the same rate we always have, each passage of time feels more and more brief as we get older. The same is true for an aging parent. Since there are generational gaps between us younger folks and the elderly, it’s sometimes necessary to take extra care by trying to understanding our parents a little better. We need to do our best to recognize our parents’ needs and try to learn about and acknowledge the person they’ve grown to become instead of just viewing them as our mothers and fathers who raised us.
We as adult children might be familiar with their likes, dislikes, routines, friends, and other aspects of their lives, but many of us might not have any idea of the desires and often unspoken wishes of our parents. Although we might be parents ourselves and consider our own parents as the people who took care of us and our needs while we were growing up, we sometimes fail to realize that we have a responsibility to help them with their emotional and social needs as well. We as parents to our own children know that they don’t realize the things we go thru or what our hopes and wishes for them are. Just because we’re parents doesn’t mean it defines us as a person. (Fowler, 2019). Being able to connect with your parents on a deeper level should be more motivation for us to want to get to know them better.
Advantages of Getting to know Your Parents Better:
Time is one of the most critical factors affecting a person’s life; henceforth, we should want to get reacquainted with our aging parents who may always long for our time and attention the most. After all, these might be the only times you may be able to spend with them – so cherish it – because you might not get another chance to do so.
By spending some time with them, you will be better equipped to share your parents’ memories and stories with your own kids. Your own kids might also realize that they should spend more time with you when they grow up to be adults, if you set them up now to exemplify the value there is in connecting with older generations (Fowler, 2019).
Ways to Understand Your Aging Parents:
There are specific ways in which you can understand your parents in a better way in addition to asking them about their needs, likes and dislikes. When you spend time with them, consider these other questions and conversation starters that will be sure to get some response:
- Do you want to share things that you haven’t expressed before? I am grown up enough now to understand your perspective and motive. Let’s talk about everything!
- Have you ever had a job you didn’t like but continued working for the employer anyway? How was your experience, and how did you feel after taking such a step?
- Have you made any pen pals when you were younger? Alternatively, have any of your friends left home to live abroad, and have you stayed in contact with them by mail?
- Do you have something surprising about your parents to share with us? What was their life like? How were you as a child?
- Have you traveled to other places before you had children? How did you and (mom or dad) meet and what was it like to date back then?
- Where is your favorite place to go, and what do you like about it the most?
- Do you regret anything from the past? What do you most regret about your life?
- How were you like when you were a kid? Moreover, how were you at studying and school?
There are certainly many other questions you can ask your parents and activities you can enjoy together to improve your relationship with your parents. What’s important is that you make the time and give them the love and attention they so want from you. (Fowler, 2019).
Fowler, K. (2019, December 10). A Place for Mom. Retrieved from https://www.aplaceformom.com/blog/2-24-17-tips-to-better-understand-your-aging-parents/