November 17 2017
Watching your parents and family members age is something that many young adults have to deal with. Although each situation is different, many eventually determine that moving their loved ones to a retirement community is in everyone’s best interest. This can be a difficult time, but there are steps you can take that will help ease the transition.
- Be Open, and Communicate – Having “the talk” will not be easy, but you’ll feel better once having it. It’s recommended that you have the conversation before it becomes necessary to do so. Timing is important, and being on the same page when the need for assisted living arises will make for an easier transition. It’s also important that you clearly communicate how you are feeling, instead of passing the blame to your parents. Doing so could invoke a defensive reaction, causing them to put their guard up and fight the idea of moving into a retirement community.
- Be Understanding – You should try to display empathy when handling the situation. This move will be tough for your parents to accept. It’s important to understand their emotions throughout the process. Listen to what they are saying, and try to make compromises when possible. If they’re worried about losing their independence, look into facilities such as Lockwood’s that provide independent living situations.
- Go Through the Process Together – Again, you should be understanding of what your parents want out of the situation. You should tour retirement communities together, and discuss important aspects such as location and amenities. Considering they are the ones moving, their opinion is just as important as yours.
- Help with Moving – Your parents will not be able to pack up their entire house alone. They may not have the physical strength, but it will also be emotionally difficult to depart with cherished items, which may be necessary to do when moving into a retirement community. Try to leave an ample amount of packing time before the move, so that this process isn’t rushed.
- The Process Isn’t Complete After the Move – When it comes time for the move itself, you should set aside a good amount of time to help get your loved ones settled. Help them unpack and decorate, ensuring their new living situation feels like a new home. You want them to be as comfortable as possible! Once this is complete, you should still be involved in your parents’ life. Check in regularly and keep in touch, paying careful attention to how they sound. An adjustment period is expected, and it’s important to have patience during this process.