News & Advice

Preparing Parents for Assisted Living Facility

Caring for an elderly parent, especially when she needs all the assistance she could get, takes a lot of hard work, patience, and commitment. Even if there’s a caregiver around and you obligate yourself for close supervision, it would still take a toll on you and your family. It may be the appropriate time to consider putting her in an assisted living facility.

If all options point to assisted living facilities, the hardest part of the transition is breaking the news to your parents. You can never guess what kind of reaction you’ll get. She might take it positively or she may resort to self-pity interpreting the action as some sort of a burden. This is why it’s very important for you to find the guts and the best way to tell her of your suggestion.

Initial preparation

  1. Assess your parents’ needs as well as your family and your parents’ financial capability so you’ll know what type of accommodation may be available for your parents.
  2. Look for possible assisted living facilities in advance based on your parents’ need. You need to know about:
    • Assistance in activities of daily living
    • Meal preparations
    • Housekeeping and laundry services
    • Access to health and medical services
    • Social and recreational activities
    • Exercise and wellness programs
    • Round-the-clock security
  3. Don’t tell your parents immediately. Break the news slowly by providing hints. If possible, you can ask for video clips or download video clips about assisted living facilities and sneak it in your television during her viewing time.
  4. If you deem it’s the right time, discuss the matter with your parents. Point out all the positive aspects and the benefits the facility could provide her.
  5. Give ample time for the idea to sink in with your parents. Understand her initial emotion and reluctance to move.
  6. Pay the prospective facilities a visit together with your parents and discuss her wishes when the time comes that she accepts the idea of moving into the community.

What to do during the first few weeks

The week before the move and a few weeks after are the hardest time for your parents and for your family. Even when there’s acceptance that your parents will move to a new home, you’ll still feel the grief and loss. Negate all complications with these ideas:

  1. Set a friendly and happy environment during the transition week even if everybody’s in sorrow.
  2. Help your parents pack early so everything’s set, and you’ll know what to keep and what to discard.
  3. Be sure to handle all financial concerns before the move.
  4. Call and visit your parents as often as possible and encourage other family members and friends to visit, too.

Make the transition of your parents from your house to an assisted living facility as uncomplicated and smooth as possible. She may be reluctant to leave because of friends, family, and the familiarity of home. But once she gets used to the advantages of the facility, she probably wouldn’t want to live anywhere else.