3 Ways to Show Your Parent That Moving to Assisted Living is the Right Decision
Are you dreading having the “assisted living” talk with your parent? Maybe you’ve already talked to them about moving into an assisted living community, and they were resistant to the idea. Leaving your home and moving into a whole new community can be uncomfortable and overwhelming for seniors, but in most cases, it’s the best way to promote their wellbeing.
When you’re talking to your parent about moving into an assisted living community, there are a few topics you should focus on. As you bring up the conversation with your parent, talk to them about how this move could improve their life in the following ways.
While it’s never easy to leave home, sometimes it’s just safer for your loved one to be in a monitored environment. If safety is becoming a larger concern with your parent, show them how staying at home could possibly harm them, and then talk about how an assisted living community keeps them safe and healthy.
Concerns about safety are a big reason why many families turn to assisted living for their senior loved ones. One of the biggest concerns is your parent falling at home. When your parent lives alone and falls, they could suffer a serious injury or be unable to get to a phone to call for help. This is a really scary possibility for both your loved one and your family. If they live in an assisted living community, on the other hand, they always have someone there to check on them or provide immediate medical attention if needed.
Maybe your parent has already had a fall. If they’re leaving a rehab facility after recovering, you may want to talk to them about moving into an assisted living community immediately, instead of going back home. This minimizes the possibility of re-injury, and the transition will be easier than if they move back home and move out again into a community.
While falls are a scary possibility, that’s not the only safety concern for a senior that still lives at home alone. With age often comes memory loss or forgetfulness. This make seniors vulnerable to little errors that can turn into big problems, like leaving the stove on or the front door unlocked. These small moments of forgetfulness are a threat to your loved one’s safety, unless you move your parent to an assisted living community. In these environments, they’re not responsible for locking doors, turning off stoves, or any of these other tasks that could cause potential safety issues. Staff members at assisted living communities have an ultimate goal: keeping seniors safe.
Do you worry that your parent is bored or lonely at home? For many families, it’s hard to work in a visit to Grandma’s house after busy work days or picking up kids from soccer practice. But, you don’t want your parent to feel alone or like it’s a burden when family members pay a visit. However, when you move parents to an assisted living community they now have a long list of activities to participate in and new friends to socialize with each day.
Loneliness and depression can be major concerns for seniors, especially if your parent has recently lost their spouse. It can feel impossible to reframe your entire life and rediscover your purpose when your other half is gone. If you’re worried about your parent’s emotional state, there are a few signs that might indicate they are depressed like withdrawal from social activities, weight loss, insomnia, or changes in personality. Sadly, some seniors even struggle with suicidal thoughts.
Fortunately, moving into an assisted living community can open up a whole new chapter of your parent’s life. In these communities, there are activities to engage in each day. They have shared meals with other residents. Your parent can join clubs or participate in new hobbies. In fact, most assisted living communities provide their seniors with transportation to shopping trips or other outings, so they never feel cooped up at home again. In an assisted living community, your parent probably won’t have time to feel lonely when there are so many engaging activities going on!
3. Daily Chores
Has your parent gotten to the point where the daily chores of life are just too overwhelming? Many seniors due to illness, injury, or just progression of age struggle to keep up with tasks like maintaining a home, yard, car, cooking or more. If that’s the case with your parent, it might be time to move to an assisted living community.
So, what are some signs that your parent is overwhelmed by daily life? First, take a look at their home. Some seniors are prone to clutter as it becomes too much trouble to keep their homes clean and organized. You might notice that some bills have gone unpaid as your parent’s memory is failing. Maybe the once well-tended plants in the yard are withering and dying. If your parent’s home isn’t in the same shape it was in five or ten years ago, this might be a sign that assisted living is the right answer.
Also, if your loved one is losing weight because they’re not eating regular, healthy meals, it could be time for a change. Lack of self-care is a telltale sign that a senior is struggling with life at home.
In assisted living communities, everything is taken care of for your parent. Regular meals are provided. Landscapers tend outdoor areas. They even have laundry services! Plus, your parent no longer needs their car since transportation is regularly provided. All the cares and burdens of living at home alone are eliminated, and your parent is free to enjoy this stage of life.
Talking to your parent about moving into an assisted living community doesn’t have to be a tense conversation. Ultimately, it’s in their best interest from a safety, social, and daily care standpoint. Approach the topic with care and understanding. Be patient with your parent and outline how this is the best decision to ensure this season of their life is happy one.
Learn more about life in an assisted living community. Download this free guide on the ABC’s of Assisted Living.
About Chelsea Sayegh
I started working as a Marketing Coordinator for United Methodist Homes in October of 2016. I work on public relations, website management and community planning for their award winning independent and assisted living communities. As a graduate of Ursinus College with a degree in Media and Communications and a passion for serving nonprofits, United Methodist Homes has become my home away from home. I spend my days working in a community filled with smiling faces, helpful hands and wonderful residents. I have a passion for assisting seniors and take great pride in being able to promote a company with such a positive mission and values. As an individual committed to learning and growing, I have jumped right into this exciting career!
Our Blog is a 2016 Platinum Generations Award Winner! The Generations Award is an annual international competition for excellence in senior marketing recognizing professionals who have communicated to the 50+ Mature Markets.