Friday, October 15, 2010

To Nag or Not to Nag?

We spent much of the day today preparing for Mom to go out to a church function tonight. Dad talked to her earlier in the day about going and she had agreed to go. Then around dinner time, Mom decided that she did not want to go so Dad, I and my son all tried to convince Mom to go out tonight.

At the Cleveland Clinic Health Talk about Parkinson’s disease, we were told that family and friends of the patient should not nag them. We should not remind them to stand up straight when they walk, we should not tell them repeatedly to do something.

Tonight though, we were nagging Mom and I was not going to let up.

You see, socialization is one of the best things for Mom. It is part of her “treatment plan.” The best thing for her to do today was go out and be with other people. I did not feel like we could back down and just not let her go because that would make her more depressed and lonely. It would bring her spirit down and make her feel worse.

So after much talking, or nagging, Mom went with us to church. She socialized, she walked around and talked to people on her own. She smiled, laughed, and had fun. She said after we got home that she is glad she went. She had a good time and it made her feel better.

I really want to respect the “no nagging” rule, because none of us likes to have people nag us about doing things. However, what do we do when not nagging means letting someone harm themselves? It is kind of like how I have to tell my six year old son to look both ways when he crosses the street. I remind him every time, because he keeps forgetting.

Sometimes, for all of us, the thing that would help us the most is the very thing we resist doing. At those times, we might need someone to nag us. To almost drag us out of the house so we take care of ourselves. I know I have needed my husband to do this for me, and at times it literally saved my life.

It is a hard balance to strike, but on days like today, it is well worth it.

So, nag away (responsibly and with compassion) my friends.


Rev. Katie


  1. I had a wonderful time chatting with your Mom last night. Among other things we were talking about how weird your Dad's meditation sitting cushion is.

  2. Kim,
    Mom liked talking to you. And the meditation cushion is a running joke in the house!

    Rev. Katie