How to Talk About Assisted Living with a Parent or Loved One

December 15, 2022 | Assisted Living
Adult daughter with her arm around her father

According to the U.S. Census, by the year 2030, about 1 in 5 adults will have reached retirement age. If your parents or older loved ones are part of this generation, it’s possible at some point in the future, they’ll need some form of senior care. 

But what if you’ve started to notice signs that a parent or loved one might be unable to live on their own? Maybe you’ve started noticing changes in their daily routine that have been a cause of concern; they might not be prioritizing personal hygiene or other important responsibilities. Maybe they’ve started to struggle with mobility and balance; they might not be as steady on their feet as they used to be, which could lead to trips and falls. 

If this is the case, it might be time to begin a conversation about moving to an assisted living community. These communities are here for one purpose – to give older adults the assistance they need to continue to live their life to the fullest! At Astral at Auburn, our assisted living community in Indiana is here to help enhance the lives of those we serve by providing quality care, so residents can live purposefully and joyfully.

Starting the Conversation About Assisted Living

Ideally, the assisted living conversation should happen as early as possible, even if your parent or family member hasn’t begun to show signs of concern. This can help you plan for the future and provide a realistic roadmap for your family. 

However, before beginning any talk, sit down or conversation, remember this – the topic of aging can be an emotional and overwhelming subject for many. Nobody wants to admit they’ve reached a point where they’re unable to continue living independently or complete daily tasks.

Keeping this in mind, ensure the conversation stays open and respectful.  The way you decide to frame such an emotional topic is key. Below are some other helpful tips:

Be Empathetic

For a moment, put yourself in your parent or loved ones’ shoes. Understand they are going through a variety of challenging emotions and thoughts, and think about how you would like to be spoken to if you were them.

With this in mind, carefully listen to their opinions, questions and thoughts, and answer in a way that shows empathy and understanding.

Listen to Your Loved One

Try beginning the conversation with an open-ended statement rather than a direct, “It’s time that you move to an assisted living community.” Open-ended questions and statements will create a calm conversation and allow you to better understand the level of care they might need. 

It will also allow your loved one to honestly and openly express any health concerns, struggles to complete daily tasks or anything else hindering their lifestyle. Here are some examples to use:

  • “I read an article about active senior living the other day; I think this is something that could benefit your lifestyle. What do you think?”
  • “Have you been feeling alright lately? Is there anything that I could help you with around the house?”
  • “I noticed that you seem to be struggling with some things lately, and I want you to know that I’m always here to support you. Has there been anything specific that you need any assistance with?”

Their Wellbeing is the Priority

Make sure to express to your parent or loved one that you are starting this conversation because their health and wellbeing are important to you. Let them know that you love them and are only concerned because you want them to be in your life for as long as possible. 

Ask them questions about their ideal lifestyle, and explain that you will help them by any means necessary to find the perfect community where they can enjoy a balance of care and fulfillment.

What are the Next Steps?

After deciding that a move to an assisted living community is the best option for your loved one, it’s time for you to embark on the next step in this journey: planning!

Research with your loved one to find an assisted living community in Indiana that fits their care needs, lifestyle, interests and passions. Most of these communities promote an active lifestyle, which means residents can enjoy amenities like fitness centers and classes, enriching activity groups, creative arts centers and social events where they can meet friendly faces and form lasting friendships! 

At Astral at Auburn, active living is what makes our Indiana assisted living community so special – new adventures at every corner!

Be sure to tour different communities as well, so that you and your loved one can get an in-person feel for the culture and sense of atmosphere of each location.

We invite you to discover life at Astral at Auburn by visiting our website or scheduling a tour of our assisted living community in Auburn, Indiana.

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