When you're a family caregiver, you're going to be in charge of more than a few family meetings. Some of those meetings may not go as well as you might hope.
Recap What Is Going on with Your Loved One
At the beginning of the meeting, update everyone on what is going on with your loved one's care. You're going to want to include everything from health issues that are ongoing or resolved to other issues, such as your own needs as a caregiver. Let them know what good results have come from hiring home care providers, for example, so that they understand how past decisions are affecting current care. At the end of the meeting, recap what has been decided or is still to be decided from the current meeting.
Make Sure Everyone Gets a Chance to Talk
When people don't feel heard or they feel that they haven't been given a chance to share their point of view, they can get a bit cranky. That can directly lead to bickering and sniping at each other and at you. Instead, make a concerted effort to let everyone get a chance to talk if they want to. You can even try using techniques such as a timer or a "talking stick" to help keep this fair for everyone.
Make the Meetings a Regular Occurrence
If the meetings you're holding with family members are sporadic at best, people are going to feel out of the loop. Make an effort to keep the meetings consistent and regular. This lets everyone know what to expect and how often to expect it. You don't have to hold meetings weekly, if that doesn't work for you. Bi-weekly or even monthly meetings can work just as well.
Agree to Disagree at Some Point
At some point, everyone is going to need to get back to their regular life, even if no consensus has been reached yet. That's the stage at which you'll have to agree to disagree for the moment. You can revisit the topic after everyone has had time to think more and to digest the information that they've gathered. But sitting there continuing to bicker doesn't solve anything.
Eventually, once your family members start to feel heard, you might not find yourself in this situation much, and that's a good side effect.
If you or an aging loved one are considering home care in Danbury, CT or the surrounding areas, please contact SYNERGY HomeCare of Danbury, CT at 203-731-2544.