Community Blog

Can You Overcome Familial Denial?

By Marcie Silverman

Family denial is a big problem that family caregivers tend to run into. Other family members may not fully “get” what’s going on with the aging members of the family and that can cause them to resist when you need them to be cooperating.

Denial Is Way More Common than You Think

Your senior’s health, particularly her future health, is likely something that you and other family members have thought or talked about in vague terms for a long time. It might have been understood, for instance, that you would be the primary caregiver. But that doesn’t mean that any real action or practical thought has gone into the topic just yet.

Talk through Why They’re in Denial

For other family members who are in denial, the situation may not have changed obviously. For you, it did, though. So it’s a good idea to sit down with them and talk about what has changed and why their perception of what’s going on hasn’t caught up with those changes.

Get Realistic with Some Facts

In most cases, facts are the big stumbling block. Your other family members may not have had access to the same facts that you’ve had access to. Often sharing that information, as much as you are able to do so, can be a huge part of getting past those barriers.

Keep Your Senior Involved, if Possible

It can help a great deal if you keep your senior involved in the discussions. If she doesn’t want to be involved, that’s a different story, but it can help your other family members to understand some of the realities that you and your senior are working with currently. Sometimes if there’s a lot of conflict, aging adults want to opt out of that.

Put Viable Solutions in Place

As you make progress on cutting through the denial, you can get more help out of reluctant family members. But if you aren’t getting that extra bit of help, you still need solutions. Hiring elderly care providers can be the answer that gives you the help that you need without pressuring the family members who still haven’t dealt with the denial that they’ve been experiencing.

Overcoming denial with your other family members is definitely not easy to do but it’s something that you need to at least attempt. Even if you’re only able to get to a certain point, that’s better than where you started. Over time, those family members who are still in denial can find their way to what’s really happening.

IF YOU OR AN AGING LOVED-ONE ARE CONSIDERING ELDERLY CARE IN TYSONS, VA, PLEASE CONTACT THE CARING STAFF AT HOME HELPERS HOME CARE. OFFERING HOME CARE IN: ARLINGTON, FAIRFAX, AND LOUDOUN COUNTIES – ARLINGTON, ALEXANDRIA, MCLEAN, FAIRFAX, VIENNA, OAKTON, RESTON, HERNDON, FALLS CHURCH, GREAT FALLS, STERLING, ASHBURN, AND LEESBURG. CALL TODAY: (703) 766-0154.