How to Talk About Residential Care With Elderly Parents

Suppose you have elderly parents staying at a place far from your location. You most likely experience concern for your beloved parents. Hearing about how difficult they have had to get around the house lately or how an illness has become more severe will indeed worry you.

If you have been feeling like this of late, it is time you have a talk with your parents about residential care. Please make no mistake about it. Turning to residential care for your parents is a crucial decision. It is also one of the most acutely felt transitions in life, making a more challenging conversation.

residential care

Naturally, your parents will most likely be reluctant or at least object, if they are not dismayed by the idea. So, you need to breach the topic with skill, diplomacy, and tact. Observing the following tips should help you in your task:

First Things First - Research!

Before you take up residential care for your parents, make sure that you are quite conversant with the several aspects of the idea. Your parents can choose to live in one of the many types of settings open to them. Each location comes with its unique level of provided care. The qualities you will find in senior housing differ from country to country and even from state to state. According to the folks from Arcare SE Queensland, the care and its cost will vary significantly from what you can expect. This makes it necessary for you to research the residential care in your parent's present location or somewhere they might wish to relocate. 

Residential care can be a bit costly. The 2019 edition of the Cost of Care Survey by Genworth found that across the US, the average cost of residential care in a one-bedroom unit stands at $4051. Coming to finances, you need to ascertain if your parents can afford the charges and what funding options are open to them. While doing this research, it is essential to go by concrete facts that will make the right decision easier. It is easier said than done as many seniors prefer to remain tight-lipped about their finances.

Discuss Future Plans On An Ongoing Basis

It pays to act fast. Talking about residential care before your parents experience any significant disruptions in their ability to live their life is a great idea. Talking early helps to make the topic hypothetical and non-threatening for your aging parents. As a result of the issue not being forced upon your parents, they are less likely to resent the idea of residential care. A casual conversation is critical. You are just asking for everyone's opinion, you know! While bringing up the residential care topic, make sure the setting is comfortable and casual. The kitchen table is the best place to get going. Convey that this is just for charting the future path, and actions are not needed at the moment. You need to get the message that your parents' opinion will be given utmost importance and consideration.

Involve Parents In The Eventual Decision

Think about it for a moment. Would you like it if you didn't have a choice in where you live and the care you get? None of us are children anymore. Like you, your parents are likely to feel the same. One good idea for elders is to go on a tour of communities where seniors live for visiting friends and relatives who live in such a community. It might make a world of difference to see actual life in such communities. Also, consider alternatives to residential care as well. It will help your parents arrive at a final opinion regarding the proposed move to residential care.

Make Sure To Figure Out The What-If Questions

Sometimes asking the testing questions can be challenging. But knowing about the answers to the vital what-if questions is essential. Accordingly, when talking about residential care with your parents, you need to talk about what steps they would take if one of them dies. Will the old house be sold and the surviving parent switch to a smaller home or relocate to a senior community? It might be hard to talk about such topics. Still, you must know your parent's wishes for such eventualities. You need to get across the point that you need to know what they want when such an eventuality occurs, though it might be upsetting to talk about it. The typical answer you will get when talking about this is that they would want each other to be safe, financially secure, and cared for well. Ask for suggestions from your parents that might help you to meet those goals.

caring for elderly parents

You and your elderly parents are likely to be overwhelmed by the sheer diversity in the kinds of communities and the provided care they can choose from. It is something you need to plan for, but it also evokes strong reactions in many elderly parents. Observe the tips mentioned in this article to bring up the topic with tact and diplomacy. Here's to the long life and health of your parents!

Susan Harris

By Susan Harris

Susan Harris is the owner of Rooted Mama Health. She is the mother to two amazing children and wife of a loving husband. She strives to provide the world with all the information they need to live a happy and health lifestyle.