Elderly alert system can help divide responsibilities between siblings

Alan Wu

January 7, 2011

As parents age, they may require more help with day-to-day activities, as well as financial responsibilities. This can sometimes create tension between siblings, but Reuters states that there are simple rules for families to follow so that the duties are all distributed evenly.

First and foremost, it's important not to fall into traditional family roles. It's irrelevant whether Mom or Dad favored one child over the others or whether one sibling went through a rebellious phase. Older parents require help and holding long-standing grudges can harm these efforts.

"Take any of your pre-conceived notions about your siblings out of the discussion and be very frank about the facts," financial adviser John Gugle told the news source.

If the family is especially stressed, children may want to seek help from an objective third party who may be able to shed light on the situation. An elder-law attorney can help distribute inheritance.

One of the most challenging parts of caregiving is staying at a parent's side for days or weeks on end. Installing an elderly alert system may afford family members some peace of mind, because this device can be used by seniors to send a medical alert to loved ones or neighbors in the case of an emergency.