How to have the “Talk” with your parents.
Have you observed your parents or grandparent’s drive lately? Are you concerned that they’re reaching the age where they’re getting too old to drive? You’re not alone! There are many people that are concerned about the driving habits of the elderly. According to a study conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “Involvement in fatal crashes, per mile traveled, begins increasing among drivers ages 70‒74 and are highest among drivers ages 85 and older.”
There are many signs to look for. Here are a few signs that 411Pain suggests to look for:
- Increase in accidents or tickets
- Falling asleep (or nearly falling asleep) at the wheel
- Decreased reaction time
- Misunderstanding traffic signs and signals
- Confusing the gas and brake pedal
- Notably slower than other drivers around them
- Forgetting traffic signs or directions to a common location
- Driving against traffic
- Issues with parking
After you’ve come to the conclusion that driving should no longer be part of a loved ones day to day, it’s time to have the talk. Do not use the words “stop driving” because it can bring up defensiveness in the person you are talking to. Instead bring up alternatives like taxi services. It is best to have this conversation with other informed or concerned parties. An example can be a senior driver safety examiner, a doctor, a family friend or a law enforcement officer if they have reached the point where they are a danger to others.
The conversation is easier than you think if you are prepared. This talk should come from a place of love and concern as it will make all the difference. Your day may come one day where you may need to stop driving also, so compassion goes a long way!