There are times when talking to your parents can feel like a chore – however much you love them, finding time to pick up the phone and have a proper conversation can be hard when you are already juggling childcare, a career, and running a home, and social life. However, prioritize the time for these important conversations – you’ll be glad you did.
Your parents are the best people to ask if you have questions about your early childhood. Do you know why you were given the name you have? How much you weighed at birth? Your first word? These are things that only your parents will know. Talk to them about events that happened in your childhood, using photos as prompts. Not only will it spark memories for them, but it will give you a deeper understanding of your own background.
Family history can give us a sense of security and belonging. Speak to your parents about their own backgrounds. Some interesting topics include their own childhoods, where they met, places they went on early dates, and their working lives. Be sure to record the information for future generations to look back on. There are specialist books you can buy to record family history, but a notepad or word document can work just as well. Find online obituary for family history.
When your parents start to get older, they may struggle with aspects of life that have previously been easy for them to manage. If possible, talk to your parents when they are in good health about what they want to happen if they become frail or suffer memory deterioration. Don’t make promises that you may not be able to keep but finding out their wishes can be useful. It may even be appropriate to check out the facilities at local care homes and town and country assisted living complexes so you are prepared when the time comes.
No one likes to think about death, but for many older people planning their own funeral is a weight off their minds. Your parents may wish to arrange their funerals through a company and pay for it in advance – far from being morbid, this can be a blessing when the time does come so the family can grieve without worrying about the finances and arrangements that come with a funeral. If they don’t want to fully arrange their funeral, it can still be helpful to discuss favorite readings and songs that may be appropriate so you can be confident they are getting the sendoff they wanted.
It can be easy to take important conversations with our parents for granted – after all, they’ve always been there. Take the time out of your day to tell them how thankful you are for the sacrifices they’ve made over the years and the support they have provided. Tell them you love them. One day you’ll be glad you did.
Enjoy the time you spend talking to your parents and discover more about their pasts – it can be an eye-opening experience and a reminder that they are people, not just Mom and Dad.