Whether you are a care manager, geriatric care manager, aging life care manager or case manager- here is what you will see when you do an intake with the difficult family .Thanksgiving opened the holiday season and now we face Hanukkah and Christmas. Learn the signs now to work with your new clients and keep them
1. Contentiousness – Old fights erupt; the family gets into arguments with one another about old issues.
“ Secret Santa bull. I got Laurie and she never got a decent gift for my kids all these years so I am never being her damn secret Santa”
2. Anger – Family members express physical anger, emotional abuse, and financial abuse,
“ Take Mom and shove it. I am not taking care of her over the holidays. She was an awful mother to me”
3. Distancing & cut off – Some siblings or parents have nothing to do with family and may not speak to parents or siblings for long periods of time.
” Aunt Kathy and I have not talked for a year-she didn’t even come to Mom’s funeral, so, of course, I am not inviting her to the first night of Hanukkah or any night”
4. Fusion – Family members, such the mother and eldest daughter, blend into one another. For example, the daughter sounds, acts and has the same prejudices as the mother.
“ Freddie and Dad might be the same damn person -never taking care of their kids. I buy gifts for Michael Freddie’s son and even put him through private school and high school –Fred never paid child support- or helped- just like Dad. Mom paid for us both to go to college. Freddie is just a damn clone of Dad”
5. Denial – Adult siblings do not see decline in a parent, do not face reality and do not take care of the parent, if he or she needs care
” Do not tell me Mom can’t wrap her own present and I should” She was always giving us unwrapped gifts. She’s selfish and lazy nor demented.”
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