As you get older, you will find freedom and start building a life of your own. And as it happens, you will notice that your role and your parents’ roles get reversed. Eventually, you will find yourself taking care of your parents. And you will need a lot of patience when that happens.
But if you’re already at this phase now, you will surely understand that dealing with aging parents is not a walk in the park at all. Some old people actually become stubborn. Things get more complicated and challenging when your parents’ mental capacity deteriorates. Dealing with them may feel like enduring constant ringing in your ears – you may even reach the point where you ask yourself if stress can actually cause tinnitus.
Before things get worse, here are some of the things that may help you extend your patience:
Accept the feeling of frustration
Frustration is part of the package, and you need to accept that. Because the longer you keep your frustration within yourself, the more frustrated and resentful you will become. It’s okay to be frustrated, but you need to vent it out in a much healthier way. Otherwise, you will end up hurting your parents with hurtful words. So, slow down and take a deep breath. Count to ten if you have to.
Stop setting unrealistic expectations
Sometimes, you get frustrated because your expectations are not met. Expecting that your parents will just function the way they used to is a great recipe for more frustrations and feelings of guilt. You are not in control of their health and condition. You are just there to help. So, what you should practice is to let somethings slide by. List down the things that you can actually have control over. More importantly, do not strive to be perfect. You may fail at times, but that is part of the process.
Turn to your social support
If you want to be a gentler or more patient child, it’s important that you reach out to people who can offer you comfort and counsel. Their words of wisdom may be just what you need to make things much simpler. So, if you’re feeling tired, you can always talk to your siblings and friends. If you feel that your mental health has been affected, don’t hesitate to seek the help of a professional.
Step back and remember their kindness
There are times when disappointments get to you, and these feelings make you feel bad and guilty. If you feel frustrated, step back and put yourself in their shoes and try to picture how patient they were with you when you were young. Always remember their kindness and love; these are the things that you may want to give them, right?
You can do this!
As long as there are love and care within you, you can successfully look after your old parents. However, don’t forget yourself in the process. It is always important that you also give yourself the care that you deserve.