Your loved ones probably have preconceived notions about the disadvantages of assisted living; make sure they’re aware of the advantages too. These advantages include immediate access to medical care, a social network and far fewer chores. Residents still have the power to choose how they spend their time and how they furnish and decorate their space.
If your loved one is still reluctant, talk about your feelings and observations using “I” statements. For example, “I’ve noticed that moving around is getting harder for you, and I worry about what might happen if you fall.” Keep the focus on what would be best for him or her.
Suggest contacting a local senior living placement company, like Senior Care Lifestyles, to schedule tours of communities and answer any questions, concerns, fears and misconceptions, such as the misbelief that assisted living is the same as a nursing home. They can also discuss alternative options for modifying the home and for in-home care services and other resources they may need.
Throughout this process, honor your loved one’s self-determination to remain independent. You can’t snap your fingers and magically change anyone’s mind. If this person repeatedly refuses, you may need to put the conversation on hold. Restart it when an opportunity arises (for example, if your parent complains about being lonely).
Unfortunately, a crisis such as a fall or other injury may be the only thing that can change your loved one’s mind. However, they need to be aware that oftentimes a crisis eliminates options due to changes in health care needs. Present assisted living as a way to prevent the crisis from reoccurring and ease the worries of the entire family.
Your loved one is facing one of the hardest decisions of his/her life. Above all else, be gentle and patient with everyone, including family members, involved in this difficult decision-making situation.