It won’t always be as easy to encourage loved ones to move into a retirement community or home as it was for Jerry Seinfeld. In fact, it may go down more like it was for George Constanza (“You don’t want to see your parents anymore, George?!”).
Finding the correct time and place to approach the subject may be just as difficult as ﬁguring out what to say and how to say it. It’s important to focus on the positives however, and encourage the transition as a welcomed next step, as opposed to a necessary evil.
Many seniors are worried that something bad could suddenly happen. Heart attacks, high blood pressure or even a nasty fall; living in a retirement facility means quicker access to life-saving care, as well as readily available medication for those who need it.
If pre-existing conditions exist, this is likely the most beneﬁcial reason to make the move.
Loneliness is a big problem for many seniors that live on their own. If they don’t get daily visits or can’t drive, a natural feeling of neglect may occur.
Compare this to being around plenty of people the same age, with the addition of activities and events to ﬁll in some of the quiet time.
HAVE REGULAR CONVERSATIONS ABOUT IT
Showing that you are trying to advocate for their well-being on a regular basis can really help with the process. Regular talks about what the future holds may result in an earlier realization that things can’t always stay the same when it comes to living situations.
GIVE THEM TIME
Don’t place anyone in a situation where they need to make a life-altering decision in just a few days. Let them stay in control as much as possible while discussing the beneﬁts, and ensure their opinion matters when it comes time to decide on the facility. Leave information (complete with photos) and let them come to their own conclusions about it.
Time is the greatest ally in these situations; the more prepared and informed we are about these decisions the easier it becomes.
Most importantly, the elements of care and love must always be included.