My work at the Chartwell New Edinburgh Square is busy, rewarding and, at times, challenging. I often fnd myself reaching out for help and counsel. One of the resources I’ve found is from Gerontological Social Worker, Dr. Amy D’Aprix.
Over the years, we've been fortunate at Chartwell to have Dr. Amy provide training and contribute blogs and information seminars. With over 30 years experience in social work gerontology she has a pulse on hot buttons and fears. Critical information during a pandemic.
These conversations are not always easy. The first one might not be successful. But, her common sense approach is comforting, and effective. I hope you find it helpful.
Dr. Amy D’Aprix
“Sometimes, communication between family members can get
complicated. We may feel nervous to broach a topic with a loved
one that we aren’t sure they will agree with, or we may get
frustrated when other family members like our spouses or siblings
don’t share our point of view. At times, it can be hard to truly
listen to one another—for example, we may think we’re right, be
in a hurry, have other responsibilities to contend with, or perhaps
even fear the consequences of the decision being discussed.
Regardless, it’s essential not to let the possibility of disagreement
stop us from having conversations with our loved ones about
important life topics that may require shared decision making.
Doing so will help us to proactively plan before a crisis occurs,
make decisions built on respect, and communicate openly
A good communication tool to keep in mind is LERA—
LISTEN: Let your family member express themselves
EMPATHIZE: Validate what they are feeling without trying to
negate or explain it away. The emotional components
of decision making are just as important as
the practical considerations.
REFRAME: Let them know what they’re feeling is normal.
ACT: Reiterate your suggested plan of action after
they feel heard and understood.”
Find more resources on Chartwell.com and Chartwell Youtube channel, including:
Caregiving During a Pandemic: The Impact on Families
Guest speaker: Dr. Amy D’Aprix, Gerontological Social Worker