The time for a move for an elderly parent to a residential care program might seem obvious to the adult children, but many parents are unaware that they should be looking for more care. Suggesting a move into a senior assisted living community can be a difficult topic to approach, so here are some tips on how to discuss care decision with a parent.
Mention it in Passing
When the time for a move begins to present itself, now is the time to start planting seeds with your parent. If a parent asks for help with tasks that they previously completed fine, such as cutting the lawn, or simple household cleaning, you can mention how residential care communities take away the burden of these chores, and more, making life easier and more enjoyable.
Keep a Positive Tone
Always speak positively of care homes. Build up all the events and perks that care communities provide. Be mindful of what you call them. Names such as “nursing homes” and “old folk homes” have gone the way of the dodo bird. Instead opt to call them communities or retirement living.
Also, when it comes down to suggesting the move, make sure you illustrate it out of love and concern for your parent, and not as a burden. We all want the best care for our parents, and it is important that they recognize that assisted living will provide the highest quality of life that independent living no longer can.
Have Friends and Other Family Bring it Up
The difficulty of making an assisted living suggestion should not be placed on one person. Involve other close family and friends and have them also encourage your parents to make the switch. This can be done as a group meeting, or with individual visits, whatever feels most natural and comfortable. You may also ask other professionals in your parents life, such as a trusted family doctor to suggest the switch to assisted living.
Take a Tour
Finally, once your parents have begun to warm to the idea, offer to bring them on a tour of some possible destinations. A tour to see the suites, meals, and to meet staff and fellow residents might be enough to calm the fear of the unknown.
Talking to your parents about care decisions can be a challenging endeavour. Following these suggestions might help to make it easier, and make everyone feel more comfortable.