Regular meetings can help families work together to support an older adult.
Meetings that improve family dynamics often:
- Help family members share information or make decisions or plans together
- Focus on the older adult's needs, wishes and priorities
- Include all family members who help make or carry out decisions
- Are held at times and places convenient for as many people as possible
- Use phone or video conferencing to allow more family members to join
- Have an agenda, or list of specific things to discuss
- Review what was discussed in the last meeting
- Create a shared record of decisions and plans made
- Recognize the contributions of each family member
- Set and follow ground rules
Ground rules for good communication during family meetings may include:
- We will take turns speaking.
- We will listen to and not interrupt each other.
- We will ask questions and try to understand others.
- We will share concerns without blaming or attacking others.
- We can ask to take a break.
Scheduling family meetings, coming up with agendas and taking notes are important tasks that can be rotated between family members or that certain people take on.