Watching your parents grow older can be difficult. Aging parents’ independence can decline while their reliance on you or your siblings can grow, creating a hard situation for the family. It can also be a difficult dynamic when the roles are reversing, and you’re more like the caretaker.
However, there are ways to help you assist your aging parents in this new stage of life. Cherrywood Pointe can help take care of the harder parts of dealing with aging parents so you can focus on spending positive, quality time with them. Below, we’ve compiled a list of ways you can foster a positive relationship with your aging parents.
Put Yourself in Their Shoes
The best way to empathize with someone is by putting yourself in their shoes. Imagine how you would feel in a situation where you might feel like you’re losing control, or you have to rely heavily on others. Moving into a senior living facility usually feels like a big transition for our seniors, so although times can be frustrating, remember to also think about what your parents are going through.
When dealing with aging parents, it’s so important both for them, but also for your relationship, that you listen to them. Listen to how they are feeling and what their needs are. Also, focus on having quality conversations so they feel heard. Aging can be lonely if your loved one doesn’t have the proper support system. Even if it’s just a phone call, the sentiment can go a long way!
It’s also important to listen to their opinions on moving to an assisted living facility. They’ll feel better if they feel heard, so as you discuss next steps for them, discuss it with them. These conversations are usually not easy, so involving them from the beginning is a good idea, as they’ll feel like they have more control of the situation.
Assess Their Needs
At Cherrywood Pointe, we offer different lifestyles for our residents based on their needs. These options include assisted living, senior living, memory care or enhanced care. You want the very best for your parents, so make sure their needs are met, whether they’re making the move to one of our locations, or choosing to live on their own. If they are living on their own, assess their quality of life. Are they happy? Are they able to perform important tasks like keeping up with hygiene and making meals for themselves? If the answers to these types of questions are no, assisted living is most likely the safest option for your parents.
As you deal with your aging parents, safety is another factor. Not only should you assess the neighborhood’s security, but you should also make sure their homes are safe, with things to consider like staircases, the shower, how the oven works and who’s responsible for removing heavy Minnesota snow.
Focus on the Positives
There are going to be good and bad days when you’re dealing with aging parents, but it’s important that you try and remain positive. It’s much more likely that your parents will also be positive if you are, and the truth is, there’s a lot to be positive about! At Cherrywood Pointe, you know they’re in good hands. Their needs will be met, and they will live comfortably with the right amount of assistance from our team. All you have to do is be a positive resource and a loving family member.
Stay in Touch
Much like what we said about the importance of listening to your parents, it’s important that you check in often! If you can’t visit in person, make a point to call at least once a week just to say hi. You could pre-program a cell phone for them or buy an iPad and give them instructions on how to FaceTime.
When you’re having your frequent conversations, make sure to ask about any concerns they have, how they are feeling, and what you can do to help. Communicate in ways that will really make their day, whether that’s by bringing their grandchildren in if you can, or even just bringing artwork they did and updated photos. You can contact Cherrywood Pointe as well, to discuss any concerns you may have. Humans are social creatures, no matter what age. It’s important that your loved ones feel connected.
At Cherrywood Pointe, it’s so important to us that you don’t feel like you’re dealing with your aging parents on your own. We care deeply about our residents and want them to feel at home within our communities. If you’d like to discuss options for your parents, get in touch with us today!