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Communication Obstacles

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Having trouble talking to your parents? You're not alone.

Most difficult topics for Boomers to speak to parents about:

  • 42% Needing to leave home
  • 30% Losing driving privileges
  • 11% Money/Finances
  • 11% Health
  • 5% None

Biggest obstacle to communicating difficult issues with parents:

  • 31% Continuation of parent/children role
  • 16% Parents refuses to talk
  • 12% Physical issues
  • 10% Child feels unprepared
  • 8% Distance
  • 5% Fear

Need help getting these important conversations off the ground, visit our Conversations Starters page or Communications Tips for more information.

Download the Most difficult topics for Boomers to speak to parents about (PDF 900 KB).

Last revised: December 8, 2010

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Thoughts and stories from others
  1. February 13, 2011 at 6:18 pm | Posted by Cindy

    My mother is 78 years old. She is starting to have problems when driving. Albeit minor mishaps, ie. ruining tires by going into potholes, going over curbs, and most recently turning into a muddy area where she thought was the road to our church. This area wasn't even a road and she got stuck in the mud. She almost hit a policeman head on and he shook his finger at her. Last year while I was riding with her, she went out onto the highway and just sat there while a car was coming. I panicked and told her to move over to the median. She assured me that she was doing just that..however, she was moving at a snail's pace. When it was over, I asked her why she would just sit in the middle of the road waiting for a car to hit us. She said she thought she was in the median. Some scary stuff. Not sure what to do as she's fairly capable most of the time.


    • July 11, 2014 at 5:53 am | Posted by Sean Lambert

      I can commiserate with you. My dad is 65 and my mom is 56. My wife, brother and parents all live together as me father is a disabled vet and my mom is his primary caregiver. Today she fell and broke her wrist to the point of needing surgery. I just started a new job today where I can work 70 hours a week and my wife began management training at her organization. I apologize, just had to get it off my chest. My grandmother was like a 3rd parent, and when she passed on in 2009 it was my first major loss. My parents addressed the driving issue with my grandma and she gave up the keys when she found out she could get a ride and some company by letting us drive her. I know at our church many people give rides to people unable to drive. My brother is a police officer and worst case scenario you could talk to a local cop about it. He can issue an order to retest at the dmv which from what you posted she will unfortunately not pass. I have even heard of people doctoring up false dmv notices to get their aged parents off the road, I read the anecdote, I don't know the man. It can salvage your relationship if the order comes from law enforcement. My brother and I are planning to move to Texas as to find affordable living. My parents were always great to us and I'm wondering how much is enough? Or do you just do what needs done? My dad receives a small stipend from the military and my mom has too much to do taking care of dad to work outside of the home. We want children some day soon she's almost 33 and I'm 31. I am afraid I can't afford to take care of my parents and children. .. do I have the children and trust that God will provide? Or do I wait to be financially well off. I came up poor and don't want the same for my kids. Any advice?


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