Making the transition from independent living to assisted living is difficult. Making the decision to send a loved one for assisted care alone can be a tough one. It is a difficult subject, due to the prevailing belief that if you truly love someone, you will live with them and act as their primary caregiver. However, this is not always feasible for families, and there is a myriad of valid reasons for it. Therefore, as difficult as it is, sometimes you will need to let go, and send your loved one to an assisted living community.
Having the Right Heart
Understand that this change will be as difficult for your loved ones as it is for you, make sure you avail yourself of all the possible options. There may be certain assisted living communities that will allow your loved one to fit in better than others. Also, consider other practical matters, such as visiting hours, and distance from your home or workplace, even the climate, if your loved one has certain allergies.
It is important to communicate the decision to your loved one genuinely and compassionately. Involve your loved one in the decision. Go through the benefits of the move. Be honest with them and yourself to help your loved one and family through this difficult process.
Knowing the Difference
Make sure you are aware of the differences between assisted living communities, nursing homes, home care, and all the other options out there. Some assisted living communities offer respite care, which is a temporary assisted living option. Some offer special memory care programs for those suffering from Alzheimer’s. Research all the options and make the right decision based on your loved one’s needs.
Ways to Ease the Transition
There are ways to make the move easier for you and your loved one. Take a tour of the community of your choice before moving in, preferably with your loved one. This is to help your loved one to get familiarized with the new environment, and this way, you can get your loved one’s opinion on the place.
You could also encourage your loved one to talk to the residents there and make new friends and acquaintances. Bring along decorations and items of sentimental value for your loved one as well. Personalize their living spaces so that it feels as if they never left home at all. And to bring that point home, pay regular visits to your loved one, schedule regular activities for him or her. The greatest fear your loved one will probably face is the fear of being forgotten. Never let your loved one feel that way.
Living in an assisted living community does not mean the end of independence. Many assisted living communities encourage independence in residents. At Rittenhouse Village At Michigan City, we do just that, and strive to make this process as smooth as possible. Contact us or schedule a tour of our senior living community to learn more!