Opening up the conversation about making the move to a retirement community can feel overwhelming for families. If the aging adult still wants to age in place at home, that conversation can be even more complicated. What matters is that families use empathy and compassion to find the right living situation for the senior they love.
Don’t Wait to Start the Conversation
So often families wait to start the conversation, knowing it’s going to be a complicated talk. But waiting only prolongs the inevitable and can make the whole thing worse. It’s a lot better to start talking about senior supportive living before the senior in question has big needs. That gives everyone a chance to investigate options.
Choose the Right Timing
There’s a lot to be said for timing a big conversation properly. Everyone involved needs to be relaxed and in a good mood before talking about something like this. If the conversation starts to become stressful, tabling it for another time is a good plan.
Validate Feelings and Listen
It’s really important to validate feelings for the senior who might have to move. There are a lot of big feelings associated with moving to a senior supportive living community, especially when the plan was always to age in place. Acknowledging those feelings is important because it helps to reduce anxiety and focus seniors on what happens next.
Highlight the Benefits
There are tons of benefits to a senior supportive living community. Some of the biggest are:
- Lots of social engagement
- Safety and security
- Access to healthcare options
- Customized care plans
- Plenty of independence
Understanding more about these benefits can help seniors to start to warm up to the idea of living in a retirement community. They may have worried that things like remaining independent wouldn’t be an option, so they need to understand what the community has to offer.
Address Issues and Concerns
Seniors are going to have issues and concerns about a move like this. Anyone would, really. The important thing is that family caregivers are able to find ways to address those issues and concerns in a satisfactory way. Answering questions and finding solutions for situations that seniors feel won’t work for them can help them to feel more confident about this choice.
One of the reasons that seniors often don’t enjoy talking about making a move to a retirement community has to do with maintaining independence and autonomy. It can feel to them as if they’re being shuffled off to a pasture of sorts, and that’s not a good feeling. Respecting the senior’s choices and decisions is an important part of helping them to maintain their independence even while they get the help that they need.
Visit Retirement Communities Together
It’s a good idea to set up times to visit retirement communities with the seniors whenever possible. Seeing the communities in person can help them to get a feel for the facility and how it operates. Each one offers unique experiences and seeing them can be really helpful.
Make a Trial Run
If the community offers the option, it can help to suggest a trial run. When seniors feel as if they have other choices, that helps them to relax and give something a true chance. That’s really important with something like a big move to a senior supportive living community.
Discussing something like making a move to a retirement community is a larger conversation than even one afternoon. Approaching the topic the right way can help seniors and family caregivers to find the right option without causing hard feelings all the way around.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering Senior Supportive Living in Swansea, IL or surrounding areas, please contact the caring staff at Knollwood Retirement Community today at (618) 226-5755
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