As your parents get older, you’re getting older too. Maybe you have your own family, and you definitely have your own life. Your parents are often enjoying their own lives too, enjoying being retired and no longer having children at home. But, even though you have your separate lives, you still want to stay close to each other. We’ve all heard stories about people whose adult children never visit them anymore, and many of us swear that will never be something they do to our own parents. So how can you make sure that doesn’t happen, and that you stay close to your parents?
Form an Adult Relationship
Transitioning from an adult-child relationship to one where both parents and children are adults can take some time. Even when adult children have families of their own, they can still fall back into old habits and patterns that are hangovers from their childhood. But taking a more adult approach to your relationship with your parents can be essential for creating stronger bonds that last. When you can treat each other more equally, you can be there for each other in different ways. It’s a relationship with both give and take on both sides.
Live Closer Together
It’s natural for adults to move away from their parents as they get older. It could be a job, a partner or just a wish for change that takes you somewhere new. However, as your parents age, this can make it difficult to keep your relationship close. Living closer together makes it a lot easier, especially if your parents might not be as able to travel as they once were. You might even contemplate the possibility of your older parents moving care homes if you want them to be closer to you. When you move home, encouraging your parents to follow makes staying close much simpler, with frequent visits more possible.
Stay in Touch
You don’t have to live close to your parents to stay close to them, even if it does help. When you live further apart, there are still plenty of ways to stay in touch. Apart from visiting each other as often as you can, you can use various communication methods to talk to each other. Speaking on the phone, emailing, making video calls or even sending things in the mail are all ways to stay in touch, no matter where you are in the world.
Plan Quality Time Together
Everyday ways to keep in touch help you stay close to your parents, but it’s nice to plan some quality time together too. This could include a special day out or even travelling together. In fact, going away together can be a great way to bond as a multi-generational family. Plus, if you’re travelling with your own children, you get free babysitting from your parents so you can do things without them.
You don’t need to let your relationship with your parents drift as everyone gets older. You might have your own lives, but you can still stay close.