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How to Talk to Your Parents About Senior Living

Start the Discussion: Your Parents and Senior Living

They had “the talk” with you, and now it’s time to have it with them. Like most, you’re probably unsure of how to approach the topic of senior living with your parent, or parents. After all, it’s not uncommon for a parent to see this as a loss of independence, or a sign that they are “too old” to take care of themselves anymore. While this is not always the case, it is important that you know what to say, how to ease their fears, and communicate the idea of senior living in a positive way. 

For more information on caring for aging parents, read our blog, Caring For Aging Parents: How to Help Them Plan for Retirement.

Initiating the Talk

Overcoming tough conversational points such as senior driving, long-term care planning, and drawing out testaments and trusts doesn’t have to be painful. In fact, this can be the moment where the benefits of senior living really shine through and take the forefront. To get to this point, you have to first initiate the conversation. This can be done easily with the help of a little guidance, patience, and understanding.

Establish an Understanding

Be sure that both you and your parents understand the depth of the conversation, and choose your words carefully. Your parents may be content with their lives, with no wish for change. Remind your parents that you love them and have their best interest at heart, and that this change isn’t a bad thing! There are plenty of benefits to senior living that they are likely unaware of, so take the time to educate them on all of the many possibilities.

Set Expectations

You want to be clear in your expectations for your parents, as well as for yourself. They need to know what to expect from the planning process, and you should also be aware of any expectations they may have for you such as scheduled visitation, communication, and financial dependency especially when it comes to their long-term care plan. 

Related: How to Plan for Rising Healthcare Costs in Retirement

Let Your Parents Take the Lead

Understanding the situation and acknowledging expectations are essential when diving into any discussion, but allowing the other person to talk and express their concerns, ask questions, and state their requirements is paramount. You want to ensure that your parents feel respected and know that they are in control of the happenings in their life. Let your parents lead the conversation, but don’t forget to mention as many possibilities as necessary. In other words, you don’t want to overwhelm them, but illustrate the importance of the conversation and make sure they are prepared to handle any what-if scenarios.

Take the Right Steps

Now that you’ve had the conversation, it’s time to put forth some action. The following three steps will propel you and your parents forward in the exploration of senior living and open the door for more information and a chance to experience a low maintenance lifestyle filled with opulence and leisure.

1. Do Your Research

In order to bring up the topic of senior living, it’s important to do your own research regarding any existing or future health conditions, as well as preferences regarding the lifestyle that certain communities offer. You can begin to ease into the conversation once you’ve learned a few things and apply them to your knowledge of your parents. Read our blog for five of the best places to retire on the East Coast!

2. Discover the Benefits

The lock and leave lifestyle of senior living comes with many benefits such as a more structured security system and a great social life. Senior living makes the transition into post-retirement seamless, as they are able to fully enjoy an active life of leisure. Living in these senior living communities, they will have a wide variety of activities and dining options. Whether your parents are accustomed to fine dining or grab-and-go, there will be something for them. With a full calendar of fun events it’s easy to socialize and establish long-lasting relationships. This keeps mental health on the up and up, while also creating memorable experiences for your parents.

3. Explore Options

When choosing a senior living community, be sure to weigh all options. Some communities, including Seafields at Kiawah Island, offer opulent amenities to cater to a beautifully lavish lifestyle. There are activities catered to all levels of physicality as well as a plethora of dining options. 

Be sure to work with your parents to prioritize the most important amenities. Many senior living or life plan communities come equipped with the basic accommodations that may not suit your parents’ lifestyle and needs. Remember, the decision to move your parents into a senior living community is a large one, and there’s no need to rush. Take your time to narrow down to your top three choices, and schedule tours with each of them, if possible. The more comfortable you feel, the more comfortable your parents will feel, so stay as involved as possible in the entire process!

Tips for Helping Aging Parents

There are a few ways to make this transition smooth and full of excitement for your parents. Here are several tips to help guide them through the process and open their minds to all the new possibilities:

  • Be patient and don’t try to rush the process. This is a big decision.
  • Show you parents that their quality of life is the priority. As long as they’re healthy and happy, the sky’s the limit.
  • Let your parents take the reins and lead the conversation. This is their life, so ultimately it’s their decision.
  • Show them that there are still great things to achieve. With senior living, you can learn something new, create new connections, and accomplish new goals. This isn’t the end, it’s only the beginning.

Begin Your Senior Living Lifestyle at Seafields at Kiawah Island

After retirement, you want a low-maintenance lifestyle full of plentiful activities and indescribable pleasures. Senior living communities will offer that and more to your parents and leave them excited for their future endeavors. At Seafields, you can look forward to opulence in abundance, insightful workshops, and a day filled with leisure and relaxation. We offer upstanding amenities including a 24-hour concierge service and transportation, picturesque views of the Lowcountry and island wildlife, and vetted staff to take care of all the heavy lifting. Click the button below to learn more about our life plan community and to contact our team. We’re excited to hear from you!