Driving is one of those things that you and your elderly family member might be having difficulty seeing eye to eye about. From her perspective, she’s driven for a long time now and she’s perfectly fine. But from your perspective, there may be some valid concerns. Reduced driving on her part might be the answer.
Talk to Her about What You’re Seeing and What’s Happening
This is a big deal for your senior. If you’re making decisions and she feels left out or worse, ordered around, that’s going to make her dig in her heels. This transition from being an adult who drives to an adult who doesn’t drive can be a painful one. There’s a lot for your senior to process around this decision and she may not be happy about what’s going on. Keep her involved in decisions.
Make This a Gradual Process
Unless your elderly family member is genuinely unsafe to drive at any time and for any reason, this needs to be a gradual process of reducing her driving. She may have been gradually limiting herself as a driver already, which is helpful. Talk to her about when she feels safest as a driver and when driving is difficult for her. Make sure you point out that you’re not trying to bench her at this point.
Find Ways to Make Errands Easier
There are a lot of reasons to be out on the road. Your senior might have appointments to go to, events she wants to attend, and errands she needs to run. There are ways to reduce some of those trips for her. Lots of places offer delivery options now, either themselves for specific customers or as a part of partnerships with delivery companies. Groceries, prescriptions, dry cleaning, and more could all be delivered to your senior’s home without her having to fire up the car.
Make Sure She’s Got Other Options
She needs to have other transportation options whenever possible, too. If your senior knows that she can rely on elderly care providers to do the driving for her, she may be more likely to go ahead with that idea. It’s especially tempting if they’re right there helping with other tasks anyway. This can ensure that your senior doesn’t try to do something unsafe just because she feels that it’s necessary. Having other options available can keep her focused on safety.
This is not an easy time for your senior or for you. Difficult talks happen around driving and it’s important that you listen to your senior’s feelings on the issue.
If you or an aging loved one are considering hiring elderly care in Sunnyvale, CA, please contact the caring staff at Home Helpers today (408) 259-5930.