We hope many of you are enjoying the latest season of the excellent BBC comedy Motherland. For us there was one scene that stood out – the moment that Julia realises she will need to provide full time care for her mother. The horror; the shock; the screaming into a towel; this may be over-dramatised, but it is certainly representative of a position that many in the ‘sandwich generation’ find themselves in.
We have a lot of very difficult conversations with senior members of our family, whether it is inheritance, funeral arrangements or financing retirement. However it seems that care is still a conversation we don’t want to have. This is a shame, because care is not the end but an opportunity to maintain independence and freedom for as long as possible. By engaging with our care decisions early, ensuring we know the options and our own preferences, we secure our own ‘best care’, whilst offering financial and emotional peace of mind for our families.
“Best care” is an elusive concept. It usually requires a cocktail of; a professional and emotionally intelligent carer, support from those close to the person receiving care, and an agency who takes the time to understand what is important to the client. In order to get this, you need to know what sort of care and life you want and what your choices are to get it. We are constantly surprised how underprepared and uncertain people are about their care options when it is such an important stage of life.
Alex and I are very happy to talk to you about care options and provide advice, even if you or your loved ones are still decades away from requiring it. Preparing for care is an important part of planning for the future and you can never start too soon.