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Regardless of the kind of relationship you have with an elderly parent, it is always challenging to talk to them about moving into one of the top assisted living facilities nearby.
Many seniors prefer to age in place and refrain from discussing transitioning subjects as they often equate it to a loss of their independence and dignity. But little did they know that going into a senior community can actually help improve their quality of life and extend their autonomy.
Indeed, moving can be a daunting decision since it requires big adjustments and major life changes. But living alone presents greater challenges that can compromise your senior loved one’s safety and health. This can include:
Fortunately, assisted living communities provide 24/7 support, medical care, and assistance that ensures the health and safety of beloved elderlies. Furthermore, studies proved that assisted living communities can significantly enhance seniors’ overall health, happiness, and life longevity.
If you want your loved one to reap these benefits and more, then you should start talking to them about a transition. But how?
Here are some tips on how to respectfully broach the subject about your senior loved one’s long-term care plans.
Understanding the different types of senior care options is important so you can discuss the matters well with your loved one. It is also essential to know these facilities to better understand what level of care suits them.
For example, seniors who are still very active can reside in an independent living facility. At the same time, those who struggle with mobility or health conditions can thrive better in assisted living facilities.
Additionally, educating yourself about senior living allows you to acknowledge its benefits and why your loved one needs to do this transition. By knowing all these things, you can then better explain to your loved one一with confidence and credibility一why moving to a senior community is the key to successful aging.
There really is no way to go about broaching this subject but to be fully honest with your senior loved one. Make it clear that your number one priority is their well-being. Let them know that their health and welfare are important to you, which is why you want to go over every possible option that can help improve and lengthen their life.
Explain to your elder loved one how transitioning to one of the top assisted living facilities can help restore their health and help them regain their independence.
Additionally, you can also research their current medical condition (if they have any) and talk about how it will progress in the coming years. Finally, discuss with them how an assisted living community can benefit them and improve their health.
After letting them know your good intentions, it’s time to let the seniors talk about their retirement wishes and end-of-life plans. You can also ask them about their long-term care plan if they have any.
In addition, you can also encourage them to discuss the challenges that they experience now by living alone. For example, do they feel lonely, or are they having a hard time tending to home maintenance and chores?
After that, gently identify the what-ifs. For instance, you can try asking them about what they want if the time comes that their spouse dies. Or what if their mobility gradually deteriorates? Do they have a specific plan for such events?
During this discussion, it’s important to reassure them that you are on their side, and they can definitely lean on you during times of crisis. Make it clear that you are just asking these hard questions to get an insight into their future plans and wishes.
Now that you have the information, it’s time to discuss their senior housing options and the possibility of a transition. It is worth noting, though, that emotional and challenging topics such as this should be framed positively.
Additionally, how you present a topic or approach a subject with your loved one will more likely decide how they will respond to it. So during your discussion, remember to use a calm tone and pleasant language to prevent coming off as controlling.
Some other tips to remember during the talk include the following:
Moreover, remember that you are just here to raise your concerns for your loved one out of love. This is not a lecture nor a conversation to force them into a facility. In the end, it will still be their decision whether to remain in their home or transition into a senior community.
Another vital thing to remember to keep your conversation smooth sailing is to listen to your loved one. Talk to them with empathy and not sympathy. Listen to their concerns or objections and let them know that every feeling they have about the situation is valid.
Your senior loved one’s anxieties and fears may come out as frustration or anger and when that happens, remember to keep your cool. Let them know that you understand and ask them for suggestions that you can do to ease the situation.
Lastly, avoid packing everything and wrapping it up in one conversation. Instead, give your loved ones plenty of time to mull over the idea of moving to one of the city’s top assisted living facilities.
Be patient and plan another discussion or two to encourage them to consider transitioning to a senior community.
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