When an aging parent’s medical condition becomes more complicated, the family needs all types of support. That is what happened to Martha F. when her 90+ year old seemingly healthy father had a fall.
“I didn’t know anything about JFS until I had something horrible happen. We didn’t realize how forgetful he had become and how many coping things he had put in place to cover it.” Ultimately, Martha’s father was diagnosed with the onset of Alzheimer’s and he was struggling with the recovery from his fall and the diagnosis. Martha was struggling with all of it, too!
The Physician Assistant working with Martha’s dad suggested that he meet with Anna from the Counseling Department at JFS. Anna asked Martha to come with her and introduce her to Dad. Martha questioned what kind of impact counseling could have on this situation. “I wondered what this younger woman could do with my much older Dad. I was skeptical. But, now my Dad thinks of Anna as a friend. She has found things in my Dad that help open him up. She is a spectacular partner with the Physician Assistant and coordinates her work into my Dad’s overall health plan. She advocates for my Dad and has turned him around!”
But the ordeal of watching her vibrant and seemingly healthy father suffer such a stunning reversal also affected Martha. And when her feelings of sadness didn’t go away, she attended a support group for loss and depression through JFS. At different times she has referred her sister and a friend to JFS support.
Looking back on it, Martha says now, “I don’t know where I’d be if Anna didn’t take that step. SHE IS GREAT!”
JFS offers families a wide variety of services to support aging parents and keep the family connected: In- Home Care for Seniors, Care Management, Counselling for all ages, Respite Care, Senior Engagement Services. But what mattered to Martha was how JFS and Anna worked with their family: As an Advocate, As a Partner, and As a Friend with creative and compassionate care for all members of the family.