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How to Care for Your Parent Without Being Overbearing

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My Mom was 29 years old when she had me, and only 45 years old when I made her a grandma. Though things started off rocky in my teen years, we've always taken care of each other. When we moved to Arizona four years ago, I knew it was only a matter of time before we got her to move here, too. Mom moved to Arizona 2 years ago, and amazingly enough she got to rent the house next door to the one we were renting! Then we bought a house, and she bought a house a few blocks away. I am so thankful to have her nearby, not just so the girls have a grandma they can see every day but so I can keep an eye on her and be here if she needs me.

Sam’s Club Caregiver

She's in her 60s so she's not old or ancient by any means, but she's AARP age. ;) She's still got a lot of life left in her, thank goodness. Mom and I enjoy hanging out together. I take her to lunch, and we play BUNCO with friends. I prefer hanging out with other people her age rather than mine anyway, so it works out well. I have a bunch of old ladies to take care of and I love it.

Sam’s Club Caregiver Program

Because Mom is older, but not OLD, I have to care for her in a way that doesn't seem like I'm trying to, you know? We do the whole mother daughter bonding thing but I always keep an extra eye on her. I visit her as often as I can, and check her house out to make sure she's taking care of it (and herself).

Tips for caring without “hovering”:

1. Check in via phone or FaceTime if you aren't able to check in in-person at least twice a week. I call my Mom daily but I know some people get busy and don't keep up with phone calls. If you can't check in, see if a neighbor (or another family member) can.
2. Ask if they need anything. I know this seems obvious but sometimes parents won't ask us when they do need something. I call my Mom when I'm at the store just to see if she needs anything. This is the perfect opportunity for her to say “yes” without feeling like she is inconveniencing me.
3. Do it anyway. Sometimes parents won't say “yes” when they should. I still get her things I know she needs, even if she doesn't ask. Drop something off on their doorstep, or sneak it inside the garage, or drop it by because you were “in the neighborhood”.

Sam’s Club Caregiver Program

She's constantly forgetting and misplacing things, so I made her a little “emergency kit” bag. It's got mascara (because she says you “can't see her eyes”), tweezers (chin hair, anyone? She's gonna kill me for typing that!), an American Flag themed fidget cube (she's the most fidgety person I know), and Poise liners (because hello, 2 kids + bladder).

Sam’s Club Caregiver Program

Today, we went to lunch together. Then, we went to pick up some more Poise pads using the Caregiver Program at Sam's Club. I love this program because it offers discreet shipping, because who – other than my Mom – dances through the store with a box of Poise?

Sams Club Poise

Sam's Club offers free shipping on select items from select locations, or you can shop online and choose “Club Pick-up”. It's easy to reorder by choosing the “Easy Reorder” option and selecting from a list of past in-club and online purchases.

Sams Club App

With the Scan & Go app, you can pay faster, get access to great deals, and beat checkout lines. Simply scan each item's barcode in the store with the item scanner, pay directly in the app, show your e-receipt, and you're on your way!

Saving time and money are both at the top of my “to do” list as a caregiver. Whether I'm caring for my kids, my wife, or my Mom, it's important to keep both of those things in mind!

How do you care for your parents? Let me know in the comments!

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Laurie Bennett

Laurie Bennett

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I share delicious, Weight Watchers - Friendly recipes and chat regularly about online business & blogging!!

20 Comments

  1. I think it is so great that you stay in touch with your mom. I love the idea of putting together a little emergency kit that she can have at her reach.

  2. My husband’s father passed away last year, and we have had to take care of his mom. His ,mom still lives by herself, but there are several things that her husband had always done that she wasn’t uncertain of after her husband’s passing. We try not to be overbearing.

  3. I don’t particularly care for my parents per se, but I do call them quite a bit and check in on them. If I can help them I do and they do the same thing to me. My parents and I are very close. It looks like you all have a wonderful relationship too

  4. Oh I just love these tips! My mom is not old by any means, but I still worry about her and didn’t know how to check in and make sure she is ok. I love these tips and plan to “check in” with her on Facebook.

  5. This post really touched home for me. My mom lives with me now. I am always trying hard to be mindful of her needs. She very appreciated and I am thankful for her being in my life, even in the state that she’s in! I love these tips, thanks for sharing!

  6. Caring for an older loved one has its challenges. I bought my first home, across the street and two houses up from my grandmother. My children call her Charlotte the Great. We spent every day together. Then we each moved, same town, just farther apart. She came to my house every morning for coffee and we laughed until our sides hurt. I reminded her about prescription refills, took her to the doctor and loved her unlike any other being. Now I’m 3,000 miles from her and my soul hurts. I am now embarking on the journey of caring for my dad. He’s not “old”, but was recently diagnosed with cancer…I am looking forward to spending time with my dad, learning about the man he is and how he became this man. It’s my turn to care for him. I’m okay with that. Thank you for these tips…they are reminders of how fortunate we are to be loved and how amazing it is to love someone.

  7. This made me tear up a little bit. I love that you and your mom are so close! That’s so important that they feel like they have their independence but knowing you’re only a phone call away. As well as that they are not a burden but now it’s our turn to take care of them!

  8. This is a great post with a lot of helpful tips. My mom will actually be moving closer to us in the near future. I’m so excited about the possibility of her being closer to the grandkids and us. I am also mindful of the fact that we will each need our space to be happy and content. It’s all about balance.

  9. I really enjoyed reading this. These are such fantastic tips and will totally help people to care for their parents without being overbearing. I love the idea of creating a kit like you did.

  10. These are wonderful tips! Both of my parents are in their 70s, but they’re quite independent, spry, and able for their age. They do have health issues, though, so I try to care for them without being overbearing.

  11. Sounds like your mom truly is your best friend. Nobody likes to see the people closest to them deteriorate by any means. You are taking such great care of her. She’s really lucky to have someone like you as well as you her. My grandma is 86 years old and has dementia, but she hasn’t gotten to the bad bathroom stage yet thankfully but I think this Poise would definitely help her. I like how thin it is too so she doesn’t feel too uncomfortable.

  12. Being able to facetime and text for updates is so awesome! A great way to check in and stay connected while keeping space!

  13. Well. There are really a lot of ways to do that. But just don’t over confident that they’re ok.

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