Refusing to Discuss POA

Often, caregivers feel like they need to do everything right. That’s a lot of  pressure! Instead, remember your role is in supporting your care recipient to live  their vision of the best life possible. It’s not about what other people think is  right, or even what you think is right. It’s about the person you care for.

Man putting his hand on another for support

Start The Conversation

Ask for help with the conversation. Include someone who your care recipient respects, but isn’t the main caregiver. Sometimes the closest caregiver gets the most push back on this conversation. You can also ask your doctor or a trusted professional to start the conversation.

  • Try not to force a decision.
  • Remind them it is completely their choice.

Provide Information

Explain that a power of attorney document:

  • Gives them control while they can still make decisions.
  • Prevents decisions from being made by someone they don’t trust.
  • May help prevent family fighting in the future.
  • Makes it easier to care for them.

Support Them To Make Decisions

  • Start by asking what you can do to help with the decision. It may help to explain the documents in a different way.
  • Ask if there’s anyone else they’d like to talk to about power of attorney, or what questions they have.
  • Don’t expect all decisions to be made during your first conversation. Give them extra time to make decisions.
  • Deciding not to make a decision is still a decision.

Expert Tip

Even if you don’t agree with your care recipient ’s decision, remember everyone has the right to make their own decisions in life. Think about times in your life you made a decision that your family didn’t agree with. Would anything have changed your mind at the time? This can help reduce any feelings of frustration that may come up.

Additional Resources

  • Two people and a dog riding in a car

    Quick Explanation of Power of Attorney (POA)

  • Man and woman walking together

    Quick Explanation Of Living Will

  • Man looking at tablet

    Future Planning & IDD

  • Elderly woman on cell phone

    Frauds & Scams: Online & Phone