There’s no question that choosing an assisted living facility for an aging loved one can be challenging. The goal is to find a senior care community that provides the support and services your loved one needs. But when it comes to determining the right home, do you know what your loved one wants? When should you start the conversation?
Before you begin this critical conversation with your aging loved one, it’s best to do some preparation beforehand. We’ve gathered some tips and questions on how to talk with your aging family member about what they would like in an assisted living facility.
Start by Creating a List of Concerns
You can start by creating a list of concerns you have for your senior family member. For instance, are you worried about them falling? Is their home no longer safe for them to live alone and independently? Is your loved one having more health issues? Do they require more help with daily activities like dressing, toileting, grooming, or meal preparation?
Take the time to discuss these questions and write down your responses. Consider any other issues that come to mind and note these, too. When you talk with your loved one, you can discuss these concerns with them to get their perspective on these issues.
Have the Conversation Early
It’s always better to have the conversation early with your senior family member. Instead of waiting for a crisis such as a fall or another health issue, discussing what your loved one would prefer in an assisted living facility prepares you both. Communicating early, before assistance is needed, ensures your loved one can share what is important to them, and you can start planning now rather than later to honor their wishes.
Take Your Time
Discussing senior care is a meaningful conversation to have with your loved one. So, be sure to take all the time necessary to learn about your loved one’s wants, needs, and preferences. Some older seniors may need more time to formulate their thoughts and express their feelings appropriately. Pressuring your loved one for answers can cause frustration and make them forget specific details that are important to them. So, keep the conversation slow and easy; avoid pressuring your loved one, and make sure they have plenty of time to express their wishes.
It’s also helpful to talk about your senior loved one’s preferences for aging services and eldercare more than once. It’s natural to want to find a solution for your loved one as soon as possible. However, this is a decision that takes time and consideration. Moreover, your senior loved one may only think of ideas after you’ve left. They deserve the opportunity to share their feelings and needs when choosing an aged care facility that is right for them.
Arrange a Visit to a Community
Once you’ve agreed that all essential details are covered, you can search for assisted living communities in Colorado for your senior loved one to visit. It’s best to arrange a tour of several eldercare facilities. These visits may be conducted in person or virtually.
The goal is to show your loved one different senior care facilities that may be a good fit. They can see what these facilities look like and learn about the amenities, lifestyle, and more.
Conversation Starter Tips
Moving a loved one to an assisted living facility can be a complex topic to bring up with them. As such, you may want to use the following conversation starters to begin a discussion:
- Do you feel comfortable or safe living in your home? (You may ask about specific features of your loved one’s home. For example, can your loved one use the stairs safely?)
- What type of health insurance or long-term care policy do you have, and what expenses does it cover?
- Do you feel lonely sometimes? Would you like to spend more time with other people your age?
- Do you need help with household chores, including lawn maintenance?
- Do you need more help and support with cooking or getting ready each day?
As you go through these questions and the discussion, pay close attention to what your loved one has to say on the matter. These open-ended questions make it easier to talk with a loved one about their situation. It can help to make notes, too.
As you go deeper into the conversation about living in a senior care facility, ask about your loved one’s preferences, what they need, and more.
The conversation about what a loved one prefers in an assisted living, eldercare, or senior care facility is challenging. It can be a sensitive conversation, especially if your senior loved one doesn’t believe they need to move.
It’s best to give your loved one plenty of time to consider what they’d prefer in a senior care facility. And asking open questions keeps them from being overwhelmed or defensive. Let your senior loved one know you’re there for them and want all the best for their care and well-being in an assisted care facility.
If you’re researching senior care options in Colorado for your loved one, contact us today. We’re always happy to answer your questions and arrange a tour.