Only a few years ago your parents were independent people enjoying retirement, grandkids and even running by Costco to pick you up some much-needed toilet paper. Now, they’re so much more reliant on you, their child—albeit grown-up child—and no one seems too happy about it.
This transition in life phases and role reversals can be difficult for everyone involved. Frustration can come to a boil, especially as we lose our patience, which, Dr. Sanam Hafeez, neuropsychologist and faculty member at Columbia University, warns is one of the first virtues to go out the window as we juggle our new reality.
“Yes, it can be hard to have continued patience when you have to repeat stories you just told your parents that they forgot or seemingly simple things like how to put a cell phone on speaker, but exercise patience, restraint and kindness before making caustic remarks,” cautions Dr. Hafeez.
…Which is why there’s one super common phrase we need to rethink when it comes to communicating with our aging parents.