NATIONAL PARENTS DAY IS JULY 23rd
STARTTHE SENIOR LIVING CONVERSATION WITH AGING PARENTS
National Parent’s Day is July 23rd,a time to celebrate your mother and father and let them how much they are loved and appreciated. This day is also a perfect opportunity to start the conversation about senior living communities with your aging parents.
Assisted Living Locators (a no-cost referral and housing placement service for seniors and their families offers expert advice on local care and professional resources in Manatee, Sarasota, Charlotte and North Lee Counties), is sharing key considerations to help you and your older adult parent begin a dialogue. This conversation will help you plan as a family for life’s natural transitions into old age and support you in finding the right senior living option.
One of the best gifts you can give your aging parents is to initiate the conversation about how they see themselves living out the rest of their lives.Although it may be hard to talk to your aging parent about difficult subjects, such as getting older, needing help, or planning to move to a senior living community, it is better to start the conversation when they are in good health rather than in the midst of a health crisis. Since many adult children don’t know how to approach the subject of senior living with their parents, here are some tips for starting thedialogue.
Beginning the conversation
Try not to approach this important opportunity as “The Conversation,” but as an ongoing series of conversations. Your parent will find it less intimidating if you address one issue at a time rather than trying to resolve everything at once. You want to establish an ongoing, honest conversation about everything related to your parent’s future. Having regular interactions about how your parents feel and what they'd look for in a new community can build a foundation for candor and help with the research process.
Set the right tone
Be a “partner,” not a “parent.” As a “partner” you have a mutual interest and a common goal. Once the topic has been brought up, listen to how your parents feel about their current needs, concerns, worries and hopes for the future. Don’t guess or make assumptions about your parents’ preferences. Ask open-ended questions that get them to express their perceptions, apprehensions and preferences. Tell them that you want to fulfill their wishes and that you want to maintain their way of life and need their help to make the right decisions.
When discussing senior living arrangements, discuss their needs
Social and emotional needs – Having a network of friends is important to everyone’s overall well-being. As they get older, your parent may not be as close to friends, family and neighbors because they may have moved or passed away. Aging may also affect their ability to get out and experience social events, resulting in isolation and loneliness. If your parent’s social network is diminishing, senior living options provide the opportunity to be a part of a new community, meet new people and perhaps even reconnect with old friends.
Physical and medical needs – Your aging parentmay need more medical help and assistance with the activities of daily living, like cleaning, cooking, and bathing. Initially, a parent may be able to live at home and take care of their own needs; however, at some point you may need to consider assisted living and care options that can best meet their physical and medical needs.
Financial needs – Senior living residents and their families generally pay the cost of service through private financial resources.Depending on the situation, and your loved one's senior living care insurance policy, some costs may be reimbursable. Aside from the sale of a home or traditional savings, your parent may also qualify for a little known benefit called Aid and Attendance which can pay for a portion of assisted living costs for veterans and their spouses or widows.Fortunately, just like the variety in settings, styles, and amenities, senior living residences are available at a variety of price points.
Be patient and consistent
Don’t expect immediate consensus or decisions. This is a big change and may take some time for your loved one to digest. Have regular conversations with your loved one about making the move to assisted living. The more often you discuss it, the less difficult it becomes for both of you. Help your loved one visualize the positive changes in daily living routines once such a move is complete.
Reach out for help
There are many senior living options available and the different types of senior living options may vary in name from state to state,which can be confusing and overwhelming.With so much to consider and such an important decision to make, we recommend calling an expert before you start your search. The Senior Care Advisors at Assisted Living Locators work with families to find the right solution for your aging parent.
Assisted Living Locators offers a full assessment of your loved one’s needs and recommends a plan that provides the full continuum of care. Our free community-oriented service allows you the freedom to access the best resources available. We take the time to ensure information is fully vetted and the most appropriate housing or care option is selected for your loved one. We are also a resource for short-term respite care, emergency discharges and out-of-town relocations.
If you are a senior or a family member looking for help navigating the many options in assisted living or memory care, we can help. We’ll discuss the best fit for your family and even tour with you at our pre-certified partners if you’d like. Contact Jaime Daniels and her team at Assisted Living Locators at 941.479.3500 X0 or via email at JDaniels@AssistedLivingLocators.com. Or you can visit us online at www.AssistedLivingManasota.com and be sure to LIKE us on Facebook at