Caring for our parents as they age seems like the obvious way to repay them. Yet, some people ask: Can I refuse to care for an elderly parent?
The question isn’t as surprising as it might seem.
After all, providing care is no small task. It can be draining both emotionally and physically. Some adult children find that they put their lives on hold, compromising their own relationships, retirement savings, careers, and much more.
There are two important questions to think about. The first is whether you can refuse to provide care, while the second is, if you can, should you?
The answers to both questions might seem obvious at first glance. Yes, you can refuse and no, you shouldn’t. But, both questions are more nuanced than they first appear.
So, let’s take a look.
Before my father’s decline, he was a preeminent scholar of Black religious history. As brilliant as he’d been, I wasn’t sure, at the end of his...