Being the only children that live close to Paul and Marjorie has given us a lot more of the responsibility and the day-to-day care. One of the things we really appreciate about Phil’s brother and his wife, Ron and Ruth, are the support they have given us emotionally and in agreeing with what we think. We feel that when we make an observation or have something to say that we think is important, they’ll listen to us and encourage us.
They’ve been very affirming in the fact that when we were feeling strongly that it would be good for Paul and Marjorie to move into assisted living, they said we’re letting them make the choice they make. If one of them falls, it’s not our fault because of that incident. They recognize that we were honoring what Paul and Marjorie wanted and so the consequences were Paul and Marjorie’s wishes, in a way.
Ruth is a licensed counselor, so it’s been helpful for her to be able to talk to me, too, because she can help me deal with some of the challenges of being a caregiver. But the fact of the matter is, in spite of the support we feel from them, we’re the ones who have to do the day-to-day care, make the observations, make the suggestions, take the phone calls, sometimes two or three a day, because something’s not right. - Susan Guengerich
These comments were taken from original interviews for the Embracing Aging documentary and have been paraphrased slightly for readability.
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