Maybe you have noticed that Mom isn’t getting out of the house and connecting with friends as much as she used to, or perhaps recently, it’s taking Dad a significant part of his day to perform simple tasks that once took him half the time. Either of these scenarios could signal that your parent could benefit from the additional support, care, and community environment provided by an assisted senior living community.
Whatever signs you notice, you may wonder how to start the conversation about assisted senior living with your parent. While bringing up this topic for the first time can be tricky, approaching it in the right way can make a significant difference in how the conversation goes.
Our team at Community Senior Life knows how important this first conversation is to the rest of the transition process. We want your family’s senior living journey to go as smoothly as possible, so we are sharing tips on approaching this topic for the first time.
Come to the Conversation Prepared
The best-case scenario is that Mom or Dad will be on board with the idea of making the move into an assisted senior living community, but they will likely still have questions when you approach them with the idea. By doing research ahead of time, you will be able to talk through and answer these questions.
On the other hand, your parent may be hesitant, or even fearful, about the idea of assisted living. These feelings likely stem from common myths and misconceptions about what life is like in an assisted living community. Again, by coming to the conversation prepared, you will be able to reassure them and debunk the myths that are causing concern.
Not only will you be able to ease their fears and explain that assisted senior living communities offer compassionate care and engaging activities, but you will also have a better idea of the options available to you and your family. This can help you feel more confident when approaching the topic for the first time.
Keep it Positive
If your parent is on the fence about moving into an assisted living community, it is important to talk about the idea in a positive manner. For example, do not talk about how time-consuming going through and packing their current home will be to prepare for the move or how sad it will be to leave their house.
Instead, focus on the positives and all the benefits that this lifestyle change will provide, such as:
- Personalized care and attention
- Enhanced independence
- Socialization and engagement opportunities
- No more home maintenance, cleaning, or upkeep
- Dining options
- Community services and amenities
An Ongoing Conversation
The topic of assisted senior living is not a “one-and-done” conversation. A lot goes into the transition process, so if Mom or Dad is not fully on board at first, that is okay. Keep the conversation ongoing and talk about it in a casual way.
Doing so may help your parent view assisted senior living as a hypothetical option and allow them to keep more of an open mind about the idea. Additionally, this casual, no-pressure approach offers them more control over the decision as opposed to feeling like they are being told that they have to move.
This also grants you and your family time to work together to find options and an assisted living community that accommodates their potential care needs and lifestyle preferences. If you wait until assisted living care is vital, your options become more limited, and the decision can feel rushed.
Making the move into an assisted living community is a significant decision, but having this initial conversation is a solid first step. Remember to be patient with your parent, listen to their concerns, and be empathic toward their situation.
Our team at Community Senior Life is here to help you and your family through each step of the transition process. If you want to learn more about our assisted senior living communities throughout Alabama, we invite you to visit our website or contact us today!