Four Steps to Getting Along With Your Elder Parent outlines some suggestions on communicating with an parent or older loved one:

1. Make today the day you pick up the phone and set a time to talk with Mom or Dad about what the future may hold. 

2. Be frank with  your aging parent on your need for openness about her finances.  If she has a stroke or is hospitalized for any reason, you will need to know what she has in the bank and where to find her assets.

3.  If your aging parent can’t live alone any longer, go through your options very carefully. Write down all the pros and cons of each thing under consideration.

4.  Find the will to use patience.

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