2022 Solve The Myth Of Assisted Living Centers: Stop Feeling Guilty And Learn How To Help Your Aging Parents

The decision to place your parents into a nursing home or assisted living facility can be quite difficult. In many cases, it can result in a tremendous amount of guilt. Even when you’re under a great deal of stress, this can be an emotional decision. The most important thing you can do when you are faced with this decision is to try to get past the guilt you are feeling as quickly as possible.

Not Your Fault

It’s imperative to recognize that the situation your parents are facing is not your fault. This is a natural phase of life that everyone experiences. While we would all like our parents to remain strong and healthy, the simple fact is that our parents will age and require more extensive care than we may be able to provide. When that happens, it’s your responsibility to ensure your parents receive the best care possible. Besides, the longer you remain under this kind of stress, the greater the chance that you’re not properly caring for yourself. When that happens, you’ll be in no condition to make educated decisions and provide the level of care your parents deserve.

Minimizing Stress

The stress of caring for elderly parents can be continual and unrelenting, as well as emotional, mental, and/or physical. It’s not uncommon for the caregivers of elderly parents to begin developing their health problems as a result of the stress they face and the tendency to not eat properly or get a sufficient amount of sleep. Your parents are at their most vulnerable and suddenly you realize you must have them trust new caregivers, form new acquaintances, establish new schedules, and acclimate to a new environment. The guilt associated with these changes is quite typical of individuals who are faced with the decision to relocate their parents.

Too Much Responsibility

Emotions faced by caregivers of elderly parents can span a broad range and include feeling inadequate as well as feeling a sense of too much responsibility. Regardless of your age, it’s only natural for you to want your parents to remain the decision-makers of the family. When you must assume that role, it’s natural to become upset. You may experience a sense of guilt regarding this role reversal. When you must move your parents, you may feel as though you are saying that you cannot properly care for your parents. One way to handle this problem is to anticipate it. Your perspective will dictate the outcome of the move. Visiting facilities with your parents early on is a great way to help keep your parents involved and retain a sense of normalcy.

Don’t Second-Guess Yourself

It’s common to continually rethink decisions regarding elder care while also replaying conversations and wondering whether you’ve made the right decision. This type of second-guessing can become a vicious circle, making and an already stressful situation even worse. Taking steps to ensure you’re making informed decisions can go a long way towards helping to ease such second-guessing and guilt in the future. Another method that can help ease the situation is to be sure your parents have a Living Will and Health Care Proxy. These documents can help to alleviate any potential areas of conflict.

Early Planning

Early planning can also help to ease the emotions you may experience regarding the lifestyle and financial consequences that can result from the decision to relocate your parents to a nursing home or assisted living community. Broaching the subject with your parents while they’re still able to assist in the decision-making process, you can broaden the available options, answer important questions and clarify some of the ambiguity that’s often associated with this phase of life.

Educate Yourself

Taking the time to be sure that you, as well as your parents, are educated and able to carefully assess available options can help to relieve the guilt you may feel. Obtain as much information as possible on the facilities available to your parents. Rather than being taken in by the look of the facility, instead, focus on the lifestyle and care that is offered. The moment you step inside a facility you should be able to gain an immediate sense of the atmosphere it provides. The most important element to focus on is whether your parents will feel at home.

The Best Care They Need

While it’s never easy to decide to move your parents, it’s important to step back and take a look at the bigger picture. Consider whether the best situation for your parents might be to move them to a facility where they can receive the best care possible. Remember, the goal is to ensure your parents are cared for in the best manner possible.

The decision to move your parents is certainly never easy. Such a decision naturally challenges the established parent-child relationship. This role reversal can be uncomfortable. It can be a huge decision to relocate your parents to a nursing home or assisted living facility. If you’re honest with yourself and you’ve done everything possible to locate the best facility for your parents based on their needs and desires, realistically look at the situation and understand that you’re providing the best care possible for your parents.

Support Groups

  • The ElderCare Forum
  • CAPS- Children of Aging Parents
  • Daily Strength

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