Maintaining a Close Relationship with Parents in Assisted Living

Maintaining a Close Relationship with Parents in Assisted Living

At some point, many of our parents will move into assisted living or another kind of senior care home. While this can help them to live independently, get the healthcare and support that they need, and enjoy their senior years with new friends and hobbies, if you are used to them being nearby, the move can change your relationship. Some people find that their parent’s lifestyle changing in such a big way can put distance between them. But it doesn’t have to. Here are some tips to help you to maintain a close relationship with your parents who are living in an assisted living community.

Give Them Space to be Independent

If you have previously been your parent’s main support and closest friend, then you may feel pushed out as they make new friends and enjoy the support of their new community. You might feel hurt, or tempted to push in. But it’s important that they are allowed to enjoy independence and do things their own way. Giving them this space will help you to maintain a good relationship, even if it looks a little different.

Visit Often

Some care homes have rules about visits in the first few weeks or months after a resident moves in. This is to help them settle and can be a great idea, so make sure you know if there are restrictions. But, as soon as you are able, try to visit regularly. Take your children and other friends and family members too.

Get Out and About

Many communities, such as assisted living Westwood from Belmont Village Senior Living are set in fantastic locations. There is lots to do on-sight, but also places to visit nearby. Instead of just visiting your loved one in their room, make plans to get out and about and let them show you around. This will make your visits more enjoyable, and put less pressure on conversation, which may feel slow if you’ve been apart for a while. You may also be able to invite your loved one to stay with you for a while, or at least to come and visit, or take trips together, depending on their health and well-being.

Spend Time with Their Friends

Hopefully, your loved one will have made plenty of friends in their new home, and they’ll take great pleasure in introducing you to them. When you visit, ask them if they want to invite friends for dinner, or to spend some time together so that you can get to know them.

Encourage Hobbies

Most senior living communities have a huge range of groups and classes for residents to enjoy. Encourage your loved one to try some, even going to take a look together when you visit. This will help to keep them happy and healthy and give you plenty to talk about when you visit.

Make the Most of Technology

If their new homes are a little further away, you might not be able to visit as often as you used to. But that doesn’t have to mean that your relationship suffers. If they have a smartphone or tablet, show them how to make video calls and send messages, and even more fun ways to communicate with apps and videos.

Your relationship is bound to change when your parent moves into assisted living, but many people find that having fewer caring responsibilities, and the peace of mind of knowing that their loved one is cared for, in time, leads to a better, more positive relationship with lots of fun.

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