My dad wanted to talk about the hard things like where he wanted to be buried, how he wanted a simple service, and how he had set up his will. It was uncomfortable for us, but I think he felt good that he expressed his wishes.
Good communication is always important, but it is especially essential in caregiving situations. Although important for all people involved including the healthcare team, certain discussions and situations may be awkward and very difficult. Expressing ourselves to one another can help keep bad feelings from festering, and going through tough times together can help family members feel more connected to one another.
This module will provide some suggestions and strategies to help you through some of those more difficult conversations including
- Approaching the subject of who will make decisions if the person who is ill is not able.
- Planning for future goals of care, other personal wishes the person who is ill may have, and funeral and estate arrangements.
- Talking to the person who is ill when they ask tough questions including when their disease progresses.
- Talking to children.
- Helping friends and colleagues with potentially uncomfortable moments including suggestions for visits.
- Optimizing your time with healthcare professionals so that you and the person who is ill can get the answers to your questions and communicate your concerns.