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Schedules are crammed – especially for those of us in the Sandwich Generation . We may be juggling schedules for two, three, or more people as we care for our beloved family – parents, kids, grandkids. In spite of that, I have found that it is invaluable of us to make every effort to go to the doctor, optometrist, dentist, and other appointments with our aging parents. I know it’s hard but there are at least three excellent reasons to do so:
1. RETENTION – In general, our beloved elders may only retain about 30-40% of what they are told . Probably even less than that if they are especially nervous about going to the doctors. We will most likely retain more than that and if we take notes, our combined information retention should be very high.
2. SERIOUSLY – We are likely to find that many doctors, nurses, etc. will take the two of us more seriously than if our elder had gone alone . I don’t know if it is due to a heightened sense of accountability, age bias, or what, but I have really noticed a difference. I’ve also found similar stories when talking to various friends.
3. BAD NEWS – If ever there is bad news given, our being there will be a tremendous blessing . Even when there is no bad news, having us there often makes them feel more comfortable.
Yes, it’s hard to add another appointment (or six) to our already overburdened caregiving calendars. However, those of us who are Baby Boomer Generation caregivers have gotten used to juggling. In the long run, we will be definitely be glad we fit these appointments in as well.