3 Tips for Talking to Your Children About Long-Term Care Planning Over the Holidays

As a parent, your top priority is protecting your children and shielding them from difficult situations. Unfortunately, however, there will come a time when you are no longer here and it is important to prepare your children for that time as best as you can. One important step in accomplishing this is discussing your long-term care planning with your children. While there is no best time to have this conversation, the holidays are a time when many families are together and may provide you with the opportunity to start the discussion. Today, we want to share with you three tips for talking to your children about your long-term care planning over the holidays.

  1. Be up front and transparent.

Open communication centers around transparency. The more honest you are about your wishes and plans, the easier it will likely be for your children to accept your plan. Share your planning goals with your children, how you plan to pay for long-term care, and your wishes for your future long-term care. Paint a picture for your children and approach this sensitive topic as lightly as possible.

  1. Share your documents with them.

If you have prepared documents, such as a health care directive or durable power of attorney, you may wish to bring them to the meeting with you. Having an illustration of your long-term care plan can show your children how much thought you put behind it. Allowing your children to be involved in the planning process as components are added or removed is also important.

  1. Remain available and willing to have another conversation.

When discussing such an overwhelming topic, your children may react differently than you expect. This is why it is so important to really listen to any concerns your children share with you and to try your best to answer questions as thoroughly as possible. You may consider finding another time to meet and check back in with your children after the holidays to see if they have any further questions or concerns that you have not yet addressed.

We know that discussing your long-term care plans with your children is likely not the conversation you wish to have during the holidays. Expressing the importance of having this conversation, however, and remaining as transparent as possible about your planning documents may help your children understand how it is in the family’s best interest to be on the same page. If you are in need of further advice or have any questions, do not wait to contact us.

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