Peace of Mind for Your Aging Parents

A Financial, Legal, and Psychological Toolkit for Adult Children, Advisors, and Caregivers

by Kenneth O. Doyle, PhD, and Larry K. Houk, JD


By 2030, more than 20 percent of the U.S. population will be aged 65 or older, compared to 13 percent in 2010.

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Cover image for Peace of Mind for Your Aging Parents

June 2018


Pages 246
Volumes 1
Size 6 1/8x9 1/4
Topics Business/Finance, Investments and Banking

Explains the most effective ways to discuss the legal and financial responsibilities that come with the end of life and tools for managing them—such as wills, trusts, estate planning, and cash management—in the context of financial psychology.

Dying is complicated. It presents myriad challenges at a time when people are least prepared to deal with complexity. Typically, aging people turn to their adult children and grandchildren, their caregivers, and their professional advisors to guide them in their final years.

This book is aimed directly at the children and grandchildren of aging parents to prepare them for meaningful conversations with their parents and among themselves. It gives them the tools they need to communicate knowledgeably with caregivers and professional advisors and to make important decisions with, or on behalf of, those who depend on them.

The authors provide legal and financial tools and techniques, including wills and trusts, cash management, and investment planning, approaching each from both a financial and a psychological perspective. They recognize that some of the challenges that people face during their last few years of life cannot be controlled and describe not only what these tools and techniques can do but also what they can't. Those that cannot be controlled, however, can still be managed, and the authors explain with clarity and compassion how to deal with them through psychological and spiritual engagement.


  • Prepares readers for meaningful conversations with their aging parents, with each other, and with the people who care for them
  • Details solutions to the problems most often mentioned by clients
  • Presents not only conventional wisdom but also state-of-the-art ideas from financial psychology
  • Defines elder law and financial issues so as to be accessible to general readers
Author Info

Kenneth O. Doyle is a professor of mass communication at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities, a licensed psychologist, and a retired financial planner. He is author of several books, including The Social Meanings of Money and Property: In Search of a Talisman (Sage Publications) and two books with Larry K. Houk, including To Tax and/or to Ration: Medicare, Medicaid, and Our Long-term Healthcare Crisis. He teaches a popular course on the symbolic meanings of money and property as well as courses on advertising and research methods. He holds a PhD in psychology from University of Minnesota Twin Cities.

Larry K. Houk is a retired attorney who practiced law in Minnesota for four decades. For most of his career, his focus was estate planning and elder law. He was appointed to the Minnesota Board on Aging for two consecutive terms by Republican and Democratic governors. In addition, he gave frequent presentations on elder law topics to attorneys (sponsored by the Minnesota Continuing Education Board) and accountants (sponsored by the Minnesota Society of Certified Public Accountants). He received his law degree from the University of Minnesota Law School in Minneapolis.



"This book is more than just a financial toolkit; it is a brilliantly informed, humane, and thoroughly readable treatise on well-being for aging parents and those who care about them. I strongly recommend it for thoughtful persons of all ages as we prepare for the greatest generational transfer of wealth in history."—Daniel Seymour Bowling III, Senior Lecturing Fellow, Duke Law School

"This book raises the questions you should have been asking—but perhaps haven't—and points you to the answers. A 'must read' for those with elderly parents and for CPA financial advisors."—Houston D. Smith Jr., CPA/PFS, MBA, CGMA

"A masterly account that completely covers all the important financial topics appropriate to your aging parents. The book's four continuing personality types help you understand on a step-by-step basis all the key questions you need to ask, including communication suggestions. It's a wonderful read."—E. Thomas Garman, Professor Emeritus, Virginia Tech University

In the News

University of Minnesota, UMN Expert: Aging U.S. Population Puts Focus on Family Care, 7/11/2018

University of Minnesota, College of Liberal Arts, Associate Professor Ken Doyle Publishes Book on Aging, 8/7/2018

Other Titles of Interest

Aging with a Plan cover imageBreaking Money Silence® cover imageThriving in Retirement cover image
Working with the Emotional Investor cover imageThe Emotional Life of Money cover imageFinance Is Personal cover image

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