What is Elder Mediation?
This is a process whereby family members, including aging parents, volunteer and agree to work with a trained mediator via a respectful, poignant, and civilized conversation. This can include family members, spouses, care givers, and professional service providers so that basic agreements and long term plans can be reached. This group, through the guidance of a mediator, address concepts of need, fairness and fears, and determines as a group what is in the best interest of the parents. We develop solutions with the family members, not for the family members.
WHAT CAN MEDIATION DO FOR YOU?
As Adults, we often argue about how to handle our aging parents' needs for long term care and daily activity issues. We often face overwhelming physical, financial, and emotional demands. In the face of these challenges, communication between family members can be difficult.
While brothers and sisters may know each other very well, the likelihood is they have never had to work together to solve problems, at least not since early childhood. Clearly, a parent in need can trigger some "nasty" disagreements. An elder care mediator can help avoid divisive costly fights and even litigation, help develop clearer understandings and most importantly, help keep the family intact by helping the family solve problems together.
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WHAT DOES AN ELDER CARE MEDIATOR DO?
Is a neutral third party who helps the family with appropriate processes in order to help them reach true consensus on decisions regarding elder care.
Helps clear up misunderstandings, provides for the expression of true feelings and keeps the family on track.
Helps family members heal hurt feelings, as well as working to avoid blame and self-pity.
Provides for future modifications of their written agreement as the need arises.
Involves the parents in the process, focusing on their capabilities rather than their perceived incapacities - Attorneys often deal exclusively with a guardian or attorney-in-fact, but in mediation, parents can be included fully or to the extent possible.
Encourages family members to focus on what is in the best interest of their parent.
Helps the family members consider as many options as possible.
Helps them evaluate options while leaving the decision making to the family.