Your parents are aging. They might have had falls and they don’t seem to care about personal hygiene anymore. Their home is not as clean and you can’t remember the last time they went to a party or out to dinner. These are all signs of withdrawal. They are finding it difficult to complete tasks. Taking a shower can be exhausting. You know that they need to move into a welcoming environment that will help bring them back to life.
When most elderly people think of assisted living, they picture squalid nursing homes.
You need to show them what senior living communities are like today.
- Senior communities encompass multiple levels of care from independent senior living with little or no supervision through assisted living to Alzheimer’s units.
- Usually the arrangements are pleasant and have roomy apartments with no maintenance. Seniors have a choice of cooking in their home or eating in a dining hall with friends.
- Instead of being cooped up in their house, they will find people knocking at their door, inviting them to join activities or go shopping or to the movies.
- Their world will open up again and life will become worth living.
Change Their Minds About Senior Communities
Steer conversations with your parents to the idea that there are options for them. If they are amenable, visit a couple of senior living communities nearby to help them get an idea of what they are really like. If they still struggle with the idea of moving to a senior community, be patient and let them make the decision theirself. You can also have them talk to friends who have made the move and love it. Arrange for them to participate in a meal or an activity in the community to help them feel comfortable as well.
Help Them Prepare for the Move
Downsizing will likely be necessary when your parents move. Help your parents to learn to let go of objects, even things with memories attached. It generally takes a while to go through everything, but give them the time to say goodbye. Don’t force your parents to get rid of everything they own, let them keep those things most precious to them. Track down all the important papers: medical documents, mortgage, bank statements, wills, and anything else of significance. Place them all in a safe place away from the moving. Plan the move so that it goes smoothly for their sakes.
Leaving your home with all its memories is a difficult milepost in life. But senior communities can offer the elderly so much that will put the sparkle back in their eyes. Help your parents have fun again.