This Sunday, June 16, is Father's Day. As children, we remember how our dads were the heroes - no feat was too much! Whether it was setting up a tent in the woods, barbecuing in the backyard, or giving you your first driving lesson, they were a source of strength for the family.Seeing a decline in a loved one's health is never easy. But, the aging men in our families still have value and wisdom to share. Ask your dad, or other older male relative, about their parents, siblings, and childhood. Since long-term memories are usually the best, you could be surprised how much they recall -- and how they dealt with their struggles. Their memories can be funny and touching - and may make you feel closer to each other. If they served in the military, they may want to recall their service.
Older adults who can recall their achievements and successes can help them to feel more satisfied with their current lives, boost their self-worth, and possibly lift depression.
To help celebrate Father's Day, here are some ideas your dad may enjoy:
- Host a family cookout and include as many generations as possible
- Take dad to a baseball game
- Visit a war museum or exhibit
- Stop by a local microbrewery
- His favorite hobby, like golf or fishing
Of course, if you're venturing out, be mindful of his meal times, medications, and be sure you know where the restrooms are located.
If you're staying in, here are some ideas he may enjoy:
- Play his favorite music - - and share new music he may like
- Watch an old movie
- Look at old family photos and share your photos and stories
- Make his favorite meal
- Play a board game
- Do minor repairs in his home
- Stock his home with lightbulbs, batteries, and non-perishable food items
- Share tips on using a smartphone, TV remote, and other technology
Time spent with our aging families is the best gift we can give -- to them, and ourselves!