There are several factors that can trigger having a senior living conversation. Parents struggling with bathing safely, preparing healthy meals or becoming isolated are only a few.
While recognizing a helping hand is often needed as we grow older, families may become familiar with the benefits of an assisted living community and how a loved one’s quality of life could be improved.
Yet, many find themselves uncertain or hesitant to have this discussion.
If you would like guidance in how to successfully navigate a senior living conversation, the following suggestions could boost your confidence to achieve positive results.
10 Tips for Having a Successful Senior Living Conversation
1. Prepare ahead of time
The most successful senior living conversations most often result from prior planning. Avoid spur-of-the-moment talks if you or your parents are upset or in the middle of an argument about whether they can take care of themselves. Being prepared will contribute greatly to an effective dialogue.
2. Let your parents know the subject is their well-being
Give your loved ones a heads-up that you’d like to talk so they don’t feel surprised or put on the spot. Respectfully let them know that you’d like to have a senior living conversation to begin exploring ideas, including remaining at home.
3. Choose the right time and place
For best results, think about where and when this conversation should take place. Who would they like to be included in the conversation? If distance is a problem for some family members, consider setting up a video conference call.
4. Learn and gather information
Give yourself time to learn as much as you can about assisted living before having any senior living conversations. Prepare to provide a brief description of the floorplans, services, typical costs and fees and the many benefits available. Consider any questions or objections that might arise so you can research the answers.
5. Acknowledge it’s their decision to make
It’s essential that your parents don’t feel as if the decision has already been made and they are merely being informed. Unless your loved ones are in crisis, support them in making their choice and considering all the options.
6. Match their situation to the advantages of assisted living
Senior living conversations are often successful if you can match a need to a service that assisted living offers. If your loved one no longer drives but dislikes asking for rides, mention the transportation provided. If cooking healthy meals has become a struggle, talk about the delicious dining programs.
7. Be sensitive to any objections or apprehension
Listen carefully and address any concerns your parents may have. Encourage them to speak openly if you sense they are uncomfortable about a certain situation. Ask questions, help them know you understand that this is a big decision and provide reassurance that the family is there to help.
8. Offer to set up a tour of a community
Visiting a community provides first-hand experience for what life there might be like. Seeing their new apartment will help your loved ones imagine how they could create their new home. Arranging for them to share a meal with other residents or participate in activities can help them feel more comfortable.
9. Return with answers to their questions
Your loved ones will likely have questions during or after the senior living conversation. Offer to get back to them with answers. Assure them that you are there as support and can be the go-between in locating information or helping to handle the logistics. Often, older adults are very concerned about how to plan for a move.
10. Schedule the next senior living conversation
If this is not an emergency and time is still available, it’s much easier if everyone understands that this is only the first senior living conversation of many. Your parents will feel reassured that they aren’t being pressured into a quick decision and this also provides the time for them to consider any concerns they may have.
Life at a Milestone Community
If you’re looking at options for retirement living, we invite your family to visit one of our Milestone communities – designed to support your loved ones to live their highest quality of life.
We offer studio and one-bedroom private apartments for our assisted living residents as well as private or shared memory care suites for those living with Alzheimer’s or dementia.
Our memory care residents are cared for by our compassionate and specially trained team – who meet them wherever they are in their journey with patience and kindness. The residents also have access to customized activities, programs and an elevated secured courtyard.
Our amenities and services encourage our residents in assisted living to engage with others, remain as independent as possible and be reassured that help is available whenever needed.
In addition to our personalized services, we offer:
· Chef-prepared meals
· Full-service dining room and bistro/bar
· Clubroom with large screen and theater style seating
· Family gathering room
· Rooftop courtyard including outdoor kitchen and firepit
· Resident accessible chef’s kitchen garden
· Senior-inspired fitness center
· Hair and nail salon
· Resident-shared laundry rooms
· Elegantly designed common areas
· 24-hour on-duty care staff
· Scheduled transportation
· Secured community
· Direct access to adjoining walking paths and parks
Senior Living Options Guide
If your family is considering retirement living, we hope you will visit one of our communities. We are a trusted resource and are here to answer any questions. Please contact us with any questions you may have or to arrange a personal tour.
Find out more about the care options senior living communities offer. Download our free Senior Living Options guide.