As an adult child, it’s only natural if you start having concerns about your parents’ ageing, and it is especially relevant what you start feeling like it’s you who does the parenting now. For many people, one of the most convenient solutions is to find a retirement home where their parents will be safe and taken care of. On the other hand, most older adults want to stay in their current home and community as they age because they don’t want to lose their independence – a fear frequently associated with ageing.
As a result, you might need to look for alternatives that will allow your parents to grow old within their own home and keep them happy while avoiding the risk of loneliness, isolation, and financial instability. These are especially important if you live far away from your family home in Staffordshire and cannot visit your parents regularly.
Below, we will share several key strategies you can use to help your parents age in place, ranging from implementing safety measures at home and hiring a live-in carer for when you’re away to supporting your parents in staying active and assessing the financial situation. Continue reading to learn more about planning for your parents’ future.
Introducing the Topic
First of all, you’ll need to discuss the topic with your parents, and having some kind of discussion is much better than simply expecting them to make their own decision or imposing something on them. Before starting a family talk, it’s important to understand that most older adults want to remain in their current home since they associate it with comfort and familiarity.
Nevertheless, this desire is often based on the fear of losing independence, often without considering the other factors involved. Therefore, try to show your parents that you would like to help them stay in their home for as long as possible (and not just until moving into a retirement home) if that’s what they really need.
If you’re not sure if your parents can handle everything on their own, consider hiring an experienced live-in carer to help them with daily activities and assist them with anything they might need. You can hire an experienced caregiver to do everything from basic housekeeping duties to providing companionship and assisting with meal preparation and medication management.
If you’re not sure if a live-in carer is right for your parents, you can always start with a more affordable solution and hire a daily, weekly, or even hourly carer to provide your parents with support. Furthermore, if you still want to help your parents stay in their home as long as possible, consider arranging regular family visits with other family members to spend more time with them, so they don’t feel alone.
If your parents are in good physical and mental health, they can stay in their home for longer than someone who is frail or has a disability. Nevertheless, it’s still important to follow some basic safety measures, especially when there are certain risks involved.
For example, if you’re not sure about how safe the stairs and the balcony of your parents’ home are, you should definitely go with them to check it out. Similarly, if your parents have poor eyesight or hearing, having a motion-activated light and a video intercom installed at their front door will help them feel safer.
Nowadays, many older adults are connected to their community through groups and organisations, but if your parents don’t spend much time with other people, you can still try to find a way for them to reconnect with others. In fact, one of the best ways to do this is by getting involved in local events and activities, such as concerts, seminars, and festivals, which often have free entry.
Similarly, if you have time on your hands and would like to help your parents while also making new friends, consider volunteering at a retirement home or an adult daycare centre. You can also encourage them to be more active by joining a local walking group or participating in gardening or knitting groups online.
Depending on their living situation and other factors, your parents might need financial support or assistance with managing their finances. If you’re afraid that your parents might run out of money because they can’t manage their finances well, you’ll need to find a way to help them manage their money and make sure they are saving.
One of the best ways to do this is by asking them to open a checking account in your name, which they can only access after getting your permission. This way, you can also monitor their spending and make sure everything is okay.
While talking about finances with your parents might seem like a difficult topic at first (especially if they are still independent), there are ways to approach this conversation without making them feel uneasy or embarrassed. First of all, make sure that you are communicating with each other regularly so that you can have constructive conversations instead of surprises down the line. Another great idea is organizing family meetings where you can talk about future plans together and discuss a few important issues while everyone feels comfortable expressing their opinions.
The Power of Reassurance
Finally, share your concerns with your parents as well as reassure them that you love them deeply and wouldn’t let anything bad happen to them. This way, you will help them feel confident about their future and avoid any unnecessary fears. If you think that your parents aren’t ready for this conversation yet, it doesn’t mean it won’t happen eventually – just be patient and remember that the most important thing is that they keep living the lives they love!
When it comes to supporting your aging parents, you want to make sure that they are happy and comfortable living in their own home, but at the same time, you don’t want them to regret their decision when it comes to moving into assisted living facilities. If you are looking for alternative options, keep in mind that hiring a live-in carer is a great solution.
At the same time, it’s worth mentioning that many older adults fear losing independence and try to fight the ageing process as long as possible, which makes the topic of ageing in place quite tricky. Be patient and keep trying; eventually, you’ll find a solution that works perfectly for everyone!