Get the right help to handle the conflicts and confusion of ageing
Did you know that when the time comes to place relatives in Aged Care, the most common presenting issue (58%) was family relationship breakdown?
- Violence and abuse
- Poor relationships
- Disrespectful behavior
- Poor communication, and
It was found that family relationship problems were evident in relationships between parents and siblings and/or between sibling groups.
Do you want this situation in your family? Find out how you can prevent it
Assisting families with ageing-related relationship issues
The Australian Government, Families in Focus initiative researches issues for the ageing population.
In their discussion article, Assisting Families with Ageing-Related Relationship Issues, the key messages were:
- As the population ages, families are dealing more and more with issues such as caring for elderly relatives and end-of-life decisions.
- These issues can cause conflict and even place elderly people at risk of violence and abuse.
- In response to the growing need of families with ageing-related issues, in 2016 Relationships Australia piloted the Elder Relationship Services Pilot Program.
Apart from working your way through the maze of different levels of care and assessment, the financial arrangements are also very complex.
You should seek advice from organizations with the authority to provide that advice.
My Aged Care provides a wonderful set of resources. These include:
- Financial Information
- MoneySmart Website
- Financial Counselling
- Financial Advisers
- Other useful resources
Bupa Aged Care has personally selected a group of recommended Financial Advisers who must undergo strict eligibility criteria. You will find these advisers on their website, together with lots of other information.
When it comes to Financial Advisers, some are trained and accredited to provide Aged Care Advice. These advisers will be members of the organization, Aged Care Financial Advisers (ACFA).
Visit their website to find out more.
Aged Care Steps is a company that trains and accredits Financial Advisers. On the website, you find a list of qualified advisers and their contact details.
Where do I find suitable accommodation?
When it comes to finding somewhere to live as your progress through the three stages of your retirement years, getting professional help should be considered. There will be occasions when you have very limited time to acquire the accommodation before you lose Government support.
Aged Care 101 is one of these service providers. Their website will take you through the maze of options and then help you find the one which best suits your needs.
You will find their videos delightful and easy to follow.
Preparing for you or your parent’s latter years
From my personal experience of helping elderly parents, I found that by far the most important thing was to have processes in place before they are needed.
For example, if you can be placed in a retirement village before you can no longer stay in the family home, you are more likely to create a new network of friends. As you become frail or memory starts to lapse this network of staff and friends will be there to support you. It is more likely to mean that you can stay longer in that residence before you are located to higher level of services. Often these higher levels of services are in the same facility, so you can still see all those new friends.
In my Good Financial Reads, I recently reviewed the book, Aged Care – Who Cares, authored by Rachel Lane and Noel Whittaker. This is an excellent reference book for anyone, who needs to get a detailed understanding of the services and accommodation available for the elderly.
Rachel also has great resources on her website, Aged Care Gurus.
Introducing the fabulous product Membo Noticeboard
Membo Noticeboard was developed by Anne-Louise Underwood and her husband, Mark when she had a problem with her mother’s memory and wanted to ensure that the stress of forgetting was overcome.
Membo Noticeboard was the winner of the award Decoding Dementia 2019. I urge you to support her project.
This is her journey:
As we get older one of the key questions on everyone’s mind is how to remain independent into our latter years – financially and physically. I wanted to solve this problem.
This is especially the case if you’ve witnessed a loved one struggling to maintain independence because of old age, or because of dementia or some other kind of disability.
MemBo Noticeboard tackles the fight for independence head-on.
My personal experience was facing the challenge of helping a parent live independently with the onset of Alzheimer’s dementia, a failing memory, and an increasing inability to manage daily tasks.
Now, this might not sound relevant for you – you’re managing 100% on your own and with no plans for that to change any time soon.
But it’s worth taking a moment to think about a tool like this as a PREVENTATIVE measure vs waiting until you need it.
MemBo Noticeboard replaces wall calendars and diaries with a simple App that displays appointments, notes, and photos on tablets and mobile phones – so simple and so useful because it doesn’t matter where you are, you have the information in your hand 24/7!
But here’s the gold.
If the time comes when you NEED support – whether it’s just a gentle check, or daily management of appointments because of significant memory problems – you already have a tool in place that will allow others like family and support people to update the information from their mobile phones, tablets or computers.
You might not want people to know everything that’s going on in your day right now, but don’t put your head in the sand.
The time may well come when some support will make ALL the difference to being able to live independently, and with dignity, for longer.
The trick is to get things into place sooner rather than later which reminds me of an old adage:
If you let others make the decisions for you, you will never be happy with the outcome!
Family Fights over Money
You will recall the very worrying statistic at the beginning of this article:
When moving elderly relatives from the family home, 58% of cases result in family relationship problems, including estrangement.
I suspect a lot of the conflict has to do with the cost of aged care and the management of the relatives’ assets such as their home.
This is where an accredited Financial Adviser can help.
The problem is that the adviser, not only has to deal with the elderly client but different family members. The adviser’s role will be to get everyone on the same page. Demonstrating what is in the best interest of his client needs to be understood by all the family. The adviser will need the support of all family members to ensure the recommendations are carried out.
As part of the FPA’s initiative to create a digital shareable report Financial Mappers developed the Client Review App.
Here the adviser can send a link to the client who can share the adviser’s advice with their family members. The family can then all understand what is being recommended and why. If they have any questions, they simply click on the Q&A tab and ask a question. The adviser will respond and everyone will know the adviser’s answer.
Having access to this type of transparency for all family members is likely to reduce the confusion and have all family members 100% behind the adviser’s recommendations.
Ask your adviser if they use Financial Mappers Pro.
My favorite interview
Rachel Lane of Aged Care Guru is often sought out by the media to comment on Aged Care.
For those at the start of the journey, looking for aged care for an elderly relative, this interview is enlightening.
Please listen to what Rachel had to say at Studio 10:
Glenis Phillips SF Fin
Designer of Financial Mappers
Disclaimer: Financial Mappers does not have an Australian Financial Services License, does not offer financial planning advice and does not recommend financial products.