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As society moves ahead at a dizzying speed, it’s important to remember that there is a generation of seniors who might not move at the same pace.

However, without these elderly ladies and gentlemen we wouldn’t be here today. Therefore, above all, our elderly relatives, friends, and neighbors need to be cherished and truly valued for the many things they can still teach us today.

In caring for our grandparents or other senior members of our community, it is important to bear in mind certain factors and sentiments they may have to cope with, and the ways you can help them do so:

They may feel physical frustration
At the tender age of 78 my mother has finally stopped speed-walking up the hills where she lives. She has just naturally slowed down. I can see that she is frustrated by this, although she recognizes that she’s very grateful to still be so physically fit. Unfortunately, her hearing has also deteriorated. I can see how flustered she feels when many people are chatting around her.

How can we help? Well, it’s hard for any of us to face physical differences, but simple things like making direct conversation with her is certainly helpful. I also try to make sure I slow my own pace when walking alongside her. Plus, I comment on all the things she’s still able to do!

owever, we do have to prepare ourselves for a time when my mother won’t be able to get out and about so easily. Part of that is reassuring her that she won’t be alone. It’s important for her to know that if the house and garden gets too much, we can find solutions — she’s stubbornly independent and hates to ask for help.

When it comes to asking for help, many seniors feel the same way. One way to respond to that reluctance is to provide help before seniors realize they need it. Take care of some basic chores you can do while visiting, like taking out the trash or making small repairs.

You can also get your kids involved, explaining to your elderly family member or friend that they are doing you a favor. Thanks to them your kids are learning valuable skills in caring for others!

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