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Conversations with a Geriatric Care Manager – Part 1

By Ann Ruckdaschel

This is the first in a series of articles addressing topics that adult children should talk about with their parents.

None of us want to think about getting “old”, but let’s face it, it’s inevitable.  In all the years I’ve worked with seniors, I never viewed myself as getting older because I’m a kid at heart.  Now that I have reached the half century mark in my own life, I have begun thinking more seriously about what my adult children need to know in the event anything should happen to me and I was unable to communicate my wishes.

Though nobody ever likes or wants to talk about such things as finances, moving, driving, or (gulp) death, your children will thank you for helping them make decisions easier.

As a Care Manager, I feel that the topics and questions addressed in this series are important for families to have conversations about NOW, whether you are the parent or you are the child.  Let’s start with the more uncomfortable topics:

Funeral Arrangements:

My own parents are a perfect example of what to do and how to do it. Both had their funeral arrangements planned (and paid for) in advance.  When my dad passed away 4 years ago, [read more] all we had to worry about was what type of flowers to have and what songs to sing.  There was minimal financial burden for my mom.  I understand that this is not a fun topic to discuss, whether it’s your funeral or a loved one’s.  However, it is a topic that MUST be discussed.  When a loved one dies, emotions are high enough without adding the burden of having to plan/make funeral arrangements. Which funeral home should you use?  What cemetery is preferred?  This includes burial plot, headstone, service, etc.  The more that can be planned in advance, the easier it is on everyone when the event arrives.  Paying in advance for these things is often less expensive as well, just make sure that the people you deal with are honorable – get recommendations from people that have done this, and get everything in writing.

If you’d like to get a second opinion on your current arrangements, would like assistance in making arrangements for this and other topics covered in this series, or just don’t know where to start, Prairie Rose Care Management is here to help. Contact us to arrange for a brief consultation to get your questions answered.

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