As people age, they tend to be more insecure, perhaps fear of being abandoned by their children...fear of sickness...fear of being a burden etc. We can only guess what is going on their minds especially your parents, your in laws, your grandparents... It's especially hard when you have your own family to run (amidst of all the chores, bills, kids, work, etc). Not saying all of them feel that way, but i'm sure some of these things you can relate to.
So here are some tips:
1) when the elders ask you out for lunch,dinner, or do something together, don't reject them immediately by saying you're not free. Explain that you have this event/chore you gotta do. Then, reschedule it. Let them know that you do want to spend time with them.
2) When you do meet them, stop playing with your gadgets. I found out this is something elders do not like. It's disrespectful and hinders the 'bonding' session. So just stash those away at least until the meal is over!
3) I know a lot of people my age are saddled by the banking/chores that sometimes their parents need them to do. Although one may argue that the elders can do it themselves, but I guess my philosophy is do what you can. If they could have done it themselves they could have. Although some use it as a way to keep connected? In a crazy way? Whatever it is, chances are you won't always have this opportunity anymore even if u beg for it when they are truly gone. Think about their unconditional love when they had to raise you up from a baby to a toddler where you're mostly helpless.
4) Get them involved in a small way. Although we may think we know everything since we're supposedly mature and able to think sanely and independently for ourselves, there's really no harm to seek some advice from the elders. Whether you do wanna take it or not, it's entirely up to you, at least you get an older person's perspective. Just as how you'd get help from your friends, why not your own parents? Sometimes they offer advice without you asking for it, well, then just listen, and if it's not something you like to hear, just nod and say you'll think about it. You dont have to dismiss them immediately. It hurts them in little ways that probably never crossed our minds.
Remember that they are sensitive people. They still see you as a child and it disappoints them that we don't listen to them anymore like we used to. Or that we don't rely on them anymore like we used to. For all the time they spend on nurturing and bringing us up with whole lot of patience, it's not too much to ask the same level of patience from us. There's nothing like a parent's love so "don't throw it all away."-Bee Gees.