Forming a Sibling Team After Holiday Visit to Aging Parents


If you scored miserably on the sibling I Hate You Story test ,,  posted in my December 11 blog , you may want to consider forgiveness before or  after -you tackle the holiday revels .

If not , once again, following the festive gathering – it won’t be just  an OD of  cocktails that make  you  queasy . If you spend yet another holiday gathering angry at your brother or sister, your  eggnog will be spiked with acid feelings of your own concoction.

In any clan, how act as a sibling is passed down to our children. We model Mom and Dad’s behavior . The month of December is a good time to think about not handing that sibling rage and blame down to your own kids.



If you have older parents, what you may unearth when you and your siblings show up this cheerful occasion – are deteriorating aging kin

Ready to put  coal in your stocking- with

Unpaid bills laying around

Missed appointments

Clutter in a home that was once always neat

Weight loss

Unwrapped gifts

Facing these holiday  red flags , you and you your midlife siblings  have to quickly form a team.

If  there are big choices looming, like how to get Mom and Dad to accept help, how to pay for it, which adult child will take the lead you have to work together- forgiveness is needed now.   If you are still angry with your sibs for childhood wounds, it makes it harder and harder for all of you to pull  together the  family squad.

Consider  the message of  the Christmas Carol”, by the great Charles Dickens, who knew a thing or two about repentance ? Find out if you have an I Hate You Story on my You Tube Channel


About momlovesyoubest

Cathy Cress holds an MSW in Aging from U.C. Berkeley. Her new book Mom Loves You Best, Forgiving and Forging Sibling Relationships , New Horizon Press, was published October 2010. Cress’s book , Handbook of Geriatric Care Management, Jones and Bartlett, is the bible of geriatric care management and is out out in a third edition in February 2011 .Her book Care Managers, Working With the Aging Family, Jones and Bartlett,2008 is one of the few major books on the aging family. Ms. Cress is the founder of GCM Consult ,working with small and national who want to add or launch GCM businesses. She is on the faculty at the University of Florida in their on line master’s in geriatric care management -GCM . She has taught geriatric care management at San Francisco State University , UC Berkeley and teaches at Cabrillo College and San Mateo College. She was founder and director of Cresscare, a GCM business, for 25 years.
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