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Talking with an Aging Parent about Moving to Assisted Living this Winter

January 28, 2016

Talking with an Aging Parent about Moving to Assisted Living this Winter

Having “the talk” with your aging loved one about living arrangements doesn’t have to be difficult. There’s a well-known stigma surrounding this conversation, but with knowledge and preparation, it can be a positive and valuable experience.

During the winter months, families tend to celebrate the holidays and get together more often. This is the perfect opportunity to begin talking with your parents about living in an Indiana assisted living community.

According to Barry Jacobs, PsyD, older adults are likely to turn down a conversation about transitioning their living arrangements.

Jacobs, author of The Emotional Survival Guide for Caregivers suggests caregivers back off when the conversation turns sour, but don’t give up. Bring up the conversation often until you and your aging loved one determine their needs for moving into an Indiana assisted living community.

Tips for a Successful Conversation

  • Discuss their future. There are many risks associated with living alone such as falling and medication mismanagement. Talk with your senior loved one about these risks and reassure them that moving into an assisted living community may prevent these dangers.
  • Put their needs first. Ensure your loved one knows that you’re having this conversation because you care about their wants and needs. Let them know that you cannot make the decision, but you can support them and help them find the best assisted living community in Indiana.
  • Focus on the positives. Moving to an assisted living community is full of advantages for older adults. These improvements include prepared meals, less maintenance, social activities and personal care assistance from on-site staff.

Create a Checklist

Once you successfully begin the conversation with your loved one about moving into an assisted living community, work together to create a checklist of must-haves and must-not-haves to find the community that best meets their needs.

The checklist should include the following factors:

  • Services Needed
  • Finances
  • Location
  • Medical Needs
  • Life enrichment programs
  • A la Carte Charges
  • Privacy Concerns
  • Resident Reactions
  • Visitor Rules

Winter is a great time to start these difficult conversations. Bring your family together to give everyone an opportunity to discuss their caregiver roles and responsibilities.

Talking with your aging loved one about moving into an assisted living community isn’t easy, we know. The earlier you start, however, the more time you will have to find a community your senior loved one will be happy to call home.