Consider a family meeting over the holidays

Holiday gatherings may provide an opening for family discussions about future care for aging relatives.

GOLDEN VALLEY, Minn. - With many families getting together for the holidays, it may also be time to consider a family meeting to discuss future care needs for aging family members.

Catherine Engstrom with caregiver services at the Wilder Foundation joined us on KARE 11 News at 11 to share some thoughts on how and when to have the conversation.

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"A family meeting is really just an opportunity for everyone involved in the care of an older adult to come together and talk about future planning, to make some decisions, or just to check in about how that older adult is doing," Engstrom said.

Engstrom says there doesn't need to be a formal time set for a family meeting, but holiday gatherings may provide an opening, since more family members are together in one place at the same time.

Engstrom adds it can be helpful to have a professional in the caregiving industry on hand during these meetings to help with a follow-up plan and provide support when emotions get high.

For information on a wide variety of aging-related topics, call the Minnesota Board on Aging's Senior Linkage Line. Experts will answer your questions on weekdays from 8 a.m, to 4:30 p.m. at 1-800-333-2433.