Helping Mom or Dad Overcome Their Fear of Moving into Senior Living
The process of moving into a senior living community can bring up a lot of emotions for you and your parent. You likely feel relief and peace of mind knowing that Mom or Dad will get the care they need in a safe and supportive environment. You both also may feel excited about the socialization and engagement opportunities an active senior living community offers.
However, it is important to be mindful that this process could also be overwhelming for your parent, and they may feel reluctance or fear about moving into senior living. Whatever emotions are surfacing, understand they are normal. Recognizing this fear and hesitation is key, so that it does not prevent your parent from moving into a senior living community that will enhance their quality of life.
As an active senior living community in Wyoming, Michigan, our team at Rivertown Ridge is sharing how to do this.
Take Time to Understand Their Feelings
Realizing that Mom or Dad is reluctant to move into senior living is a good first step, but it is only half the battle. The only way you can help your parent overcome their reluctance to senior living communities is by understanding what is causing it. Take the time to talk to your mom or dad and let them know their feelings are valid. Ask questions and listen, so you can learn what is causing their fears.
Your parent may have their own hesitations, but a few common fears that prevent individuals from moving into senior living communities include:
- The fear of losing their independence
- The thought of being forgotten by their loved ones
- Hesitations on leaving their long-time home
- Financial concerns
Empathize and Provide Reassurance
While moving to a senior community is a significant change, outdated ideas and misconceptions about senior living could be heightening your parent’s reluctance. Once you have gotten to the root of your parent’s fears, talk it through with them and provide reassurance or solutions.
For example, if your parent is afraid they will lose their independence by moving into senior living, remind them that the goal of senior living communities is to enhance independence, not limit it. By making this transition, the care and support they receive will free up their time and allow them to pursue their hobbies and interests.
Or, if your parent is reluctant to make the move because they feel they will be forgotten or lose connections with their family and friends, remind them that a senior living community won’t change anything. Family, friends, and loved ones are encouraged to visit communities for events, activities, or to share a meal.
Many active senior living communities, including Rivertown Ridge, encourage family involvement and participation. If your family always gathers at your parent’s home for a weekly meal, this tradition should not change just because they have moved into a senior living community. Reassure Mom or Dad that you will visit and call as often as you do now.
Get Familiar with the Community
If your parent is familiar with their new community before they move in, it can go a long way in helping them overcome their fear. Visit the community several times and participate in some of the activities or events they offer. Enjoy a meal and get to know the current residents and team members in the community. This way, Mom or Dad will already have established friendships and a sense of familiarity on moving day.
Moving into a senior living community is a major life transition, but your parent should not be fearful about making the move. Instead, take your time and be there to support them throughout the process. Focus on the positive aspects of what they will be gaining, such as support to lead a safer, healthier life and the ability to lead a maintenance-free lifestyle.
Our team at Rivertown Ridge can also help you and your family ease your parent’s transition. To learn more about our active senior living community in Wyoming, Michigan, we invite you to visit our website or contact a member of our team.