Acknowledging when you need help is hard, and asking for it is often even harder, especially if you need to rely on others for simple things.
“Please swallow your pride, If I have faith you need to borrow, For no one can fill those of your needs, That you won't let show” - Lean on Me, by Bill Withers
We all need help from time to time. Whether it be because of a demanding schedule, the pressures of running a household or a bout of flu slowing us down, there are occasions when anyone could do with a hand. And as we get older, it’s only natural to need some support to keep up with our daily routine and maintain our independence.
When we are young it’s difficult to put ourselves in our parents’ shoes, but consider for a moment that you have now retired and are hopefully enjoying your golden years.
You’ve diligently made provisions for your financial needs and are still healthy enough to get out and about and do the things you’ve always enjoyed. The thought of leaving the home you’ve created for an old-age facility hasn’t crossed your mind, and you certainly don’t want to be cared for. You’re still perfectly able to look after yourself, thank you very much!
However, the demands of day-to-day tasks living are relentless – in fact they become rather more tiresome – and an unexpected twist of fate can suddenly change everything. You wouldn’t want to burden your children with having to look after you, but what are your options? The good news is that there is a new model of home-based support that is completely flexible, very affordable, and keeps you in control.
The truth is that acknowledging when you need help is hard, and asking for it is often even harder, especially if you're not used to relying on others for simple things. But it’s not only keeping up with chores like shopping, laundry, going to the bank and getting out to appointments that are a pebble in the sock of your retirement years.
Without the right support, the typical health issues and procedures related to aging, like a hip or knee replacement, can put your lifestyle at risk without the right support. A fall, for example, can easily result in the need for long term rehabilitation, which is why there’s value in getting support early on and avoiding a crisis that might leave you unable to cope at home.
Care options are getting more and more expensive, especially if you need a lot of personal attention, but taking small pre-emptive steps towards preserving your health and independence could actually save money in the long run. In the same way that medical aids now pay towards gym memberships, taking steps early on you can avoid issues down the line.
So as our needs change, it becomes important to get help sooner rather than later. Even a few hours of home-based support a week can help you maintain or even improve your lifestyle rather than restrict or replace it.
The great thing about home-based care is that it can be tailored specifically around the needs of the individual. The right service should fit inconspicuously and seamlessly into your life. Care can be scheduled on a weekly or monthly basis, or even as an ad hoc service and can grow slowly over time as needs change. Support can take whatever form you need, from helping to run errands and making sure the house is in good shape to simply spending time together.
Accepting a little help in dealing with life’s challenges is not a sign of weakness; we don’t think someone hiring a financial advisor as being incapable or needy. Waiting for a mishap to occur before deciding to put support in place is unnecessary and an easy way to find out how expensive elderly care can become.
By being proactive and smoothing out the road ahead, you are improving and protecting your quality of life. In retirement years, we’ve have earned the right to a happy and independent lifestyle. Let’s not take it for granted.