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When Older Adults Refuse To Accept Help

Loved One Refusing HelpSometimes our loves ones refuse to acknowledge their limits and accept help. This can be frustrating, but can you blame them? After a lifetime of independence, accepting help can feel like giving up. At Wilf Campus, we know that you just want the best for your elderly family members, so here are some communication tips for when older adults refuse to accept care:

Start Early

The best way to get your parents to accept help is if you start bringing it up before it becomes urgent. When receiving elderly care seems to be far in the future, it is easier for them to discuss options. Ask them questions about where they see themselves aging and what type of care services they would consider when the time comes.

Give Options

The biggest reason your loved one may be refusing help is because they may feel like they are losing control of their lives. Include your parents in all decision-making and let them know they will have a lot of say in the process. 90% of seniors want to remain living at home as they age, so you may want to consider in home care services.


No matter what, keep an open mind and open ears when your parents object to receiving help. When you listen to their opinions and questions, you are showing them that you truly care about their feelings. You are also able to understand where they are coming from and why they are being resistant.

Stay Positive

Point out the positive aspect of each option, especially when they are not so obvious to your loved one. When you bring attention to the positive side of every situation, it will make them look at it differently. Always remain patient and try not to get frustrated. After all, they are adults and should be treated as such. Dealing with a stubborn parent is not the same as dealing with a stubborn child.

If you communicate effectively and show your elderly parent that you only have their best interest in mind, it will be easier to convince them to get the care they need. It is important to be understanding and look at it from their perspective… its not easy to make such drastic changes.

If you have any questions about our services and programs, contact our senior care specialist at (732) 649-3509, [email protected] or visit us at

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