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The Parent Care Conversation    by Dan Taylor order for
Parent Care Conversation
by Dan Taylor
Order:  USA  Can
Penguin, 2006 (2006)
* * *   Reviewed by Martina Bexte

Dan Taylor begins his book with an honest discussion about his own experiences with his aging dad and how he found out the hard way that his father was suffering from dementia (which generally leads to Alzheimer's). He found himself unexpectedly having to take time from his own busy baby boomer life and career and scramble to figure out how to deal with his father who was no longer capable of living on his own. Once past this eye-opening Introduction, Taylor takes you right into a series of 'vital conversations between children and parents on the most important long-term care topics, ranging from what to with the parents' home and property to money and health concerns'. He's devised his program around the acronym CARE, which translates to challenges, alternative, resources, and experience, and which he says, will help children learn how to broach a subject that they might be reluctant or afraid to discuss for fear of insulting, angering or even alienating their parents.

The first chapter helps you get past the procrastination phase - here Taylor examines the nine common excuses for doing nothing. Each excuse is followed by real life situations that show how to get past each hang-up. Then the manual quickly proceeds to the most important six chapters: The Big Picture Conversation (getting the discussion going without coming across as intrusive or bossy), The Money Conversation (discussing parents' future financial needs), The Property Conversation (what your parents have accumulated and how they'd like it dispersed), The House Conversation (what to do when the family home becomes a physical or financial burden), The Professional Care Conversation (the type of care your parents will need when, or if, they must leave their home), and lastly The Legacy Conversation (laying the groundwork for how to disperse parental assets and legacy through gifts, bequests and other methods). Again, each one is illustrated with real life case scenarios along with tips and reality checks to help you as well as your parents gain a better perspective and make the best decisions possible for your particular situation.

Taylor does indeed hit on a delicate subject that most of us, let's face it, would rather not have to think about, let alone broach with our parents. Written in an easy, conversational style, this handbook is filled with a wealth of valuable information that you may not have considered or could even overlook. The Parent Care Conversation presents a practical and collaborative approach to helping your parents (and you) embrace their golden years with greater peace of mind.

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