Happy Caregiving for Elderly Parents 明るい「介護のビジョン」を描くには

Published on: June 23, 2019

When you visit your parents after a long interval, have you ever felt like they’ve suddenly aged? Although it’s difficult when you are living abroad, you can still prepare for the time when they will require caregiving.

By Machiko Mori / Translated by Fumi Yasui [日本語記事へ]

You might not have much chance to think about your parents in your busy daily lives, but the time will surely come when we will have to face the issue of caregiving for our parents.

Many of us come from Japan, a super-aging society, where 60% of elderly people over the age of 85 need nursing care. You yourself may need to care for your parents in, who knows, 20 years, 10 years, even 5 years.

Caregiving also includes gathering information … and learning about your parent’s health condition. 

So when should we start preparing for caregiving for our parents? The answer is: when you start feeling anxious about their aging.

The word ‘caregiving’ may conjure up images of providing physical support to the elderly. But that’s not all. Caregiving also includes gathering information about the available care services where your parents live and learning about your parent’s health condition.

Caregiving requires more than just loving your parents. And it won’t happen by itself. It’s also not about worrying and becoming anxious about the unknown.

Caregiving will require a concrete strategy based on a vision of the future. It starts with envisioning the kind of caregiving set-up your parents and you, the children, want.

So where to start? How do you figure out what your parents and you want? Especially when you live far away from your parents? 

Caregiving requires more than just loving your parents. And it won’t happen by itself.

The first step is to strengthen your relationship with your parents. How often do you communicate with them? How much do you know about them?

Long before your parents need to be cared for, there are six points you should confirm with them:

  1. Where do they want to live?
  2. By whom do they want to be cared for?
  3. By whom do they NOT want to be cared for?
  4. Who pays for the care? Where will the funds come from?
  5. Any requests for terminal care?
  6. Any wishes regarding their funeral?

It’s hard to ask all of these questions out of the blue. Even if you do, it may be difficult for them to tell you what they really think without time to consider first. Start off by communicating more with your parents and building a strong(er) relationship. Then envision what you and your parents expect, based on your communications with them and an informed, concrete understanding of the situation surrounding them. Once that vision is clear, it will become easier to work out a strategy for the future.

Start from these small steps, so that both you and your parents can spend each moment happily and comfortably as they approach this phase of their lives. 


親も子どもも笑顔になれる 明るい「介護のビジョン」を描くには


By 森真智子




















Photo by Matthew Bennett on Unsplash.

About the Author

Machiko is a licensed care worker and care manager who worked at a nursing home for 8 years in Japan. She came to Bangkok 1.5 years ago following her husband’s job transfer. She is engaged in supporting children with developmental disabilities at a graduate school. Blog (Japanese): ameblo.jp/machijirou0920/


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