Parkinson's and your family
The personal impact of Parkinson's is enormous, but it also has massive implications for your spouse, your children and other members of your family.
Receiving a Parkinson's diagnosis will inevitably affect the relationships you have with friends and family. Over time, gradual adjustments will be needed on both sides of a relationship as you each adapt to life with Parkinson’s. Roles may change and as a couple you may find yourselves taking on the role of carer and cared for. It is important to allow time for everyone to adapt and adjust gradually.
As with all relationships, communication is vital, particularly if you find yourself feeling anxious or stressed. If Parkinson’s makes you withdrawn or you have low self-esteem, perhaps because of your symptoms, this can strain relationships - so talk openly about how you feel. If you have a partner, sharing your feelings can help you both cope. If you find this difficult then try talking to others who are close to you or to your doctor.
Parkinsons.Me can help you find ways to both support and be supported by other family members – to work together as a team to create a ‘new normal’ that will enable your family to function as a positive source of mutual assistance and energy.
With thanks to the European Parkinson's Disease Association for the use of material in this section (EPDA).
Telling the children
Look at our suggestions about how to talk to young people about Parkinson's
Telling your partner
Take a look at our thoughts and suggestions on this difficult and sensitive area
Caring for carers
Take a look at our suggestions on how to support the carers in your life...