What Seniors Really Mean When They Say They “Aren’t Ready” for Assisted Living
One of the biggest hesitations for seniors when it comes to exploring a senior living community is the concept of sacrifice. If you’re hearing “I’m not ready yet” from your loved one, it doesn’t necessarily mean they’re shutting the idea down completely, but instead, expressing a reluctance to give up things they’re so used to having.
In reality, assisted living provides a number of benefits to help them enjoy the things they love doing for even longer and the support to make it easier on them. If you’ve noticed some of the telling signs in your loved one’s behavior or home, such as slower recoveries to illnesses and colds, recent accidents or close calls, unopened bills or expired foods in their kitchen, or increased clutter and unkept living spaces, then it may be time to talk to them about their options.
When you do sit down with your loved one to discuss the possibility of a senior living community, they may tell you “I’m just not quite ready,” but here’s what they may really mean:
“I’m afraid of big changes/actually moving.”
Imagine things from their perspective; a whole new life in a brand new place. It’s not easy to break a routine, especially if it’s one they’ve kept for years. There’s also the actual act of making the change that can be stressful as well. Selling their home, moving all their belongings, getting acquainted with a lot of new people can all be overwhelming. A couple decades and the comforts of home can be very tough to leave.
Have patience and keep the conversation going. Let them know that a lot of these comforts can come with them, while many can be passed down to family or donated to charity. Selling a home is an emotional experience, assure them that you’ll be there throughout the process and make going through their belongings more of a wonderful memory to share instead of a hassle.
“I don’t want to give up my independence.”
While seniors may believe that staying in their own home will help maintain their independence, they may not realize how much they may have already given up by staying there. How many ways has their life changed as their daily routine has gotten harder to do on their own? Maybe their social life is now limited to when people visit or they’ve given up on some activities that were too much of a hassle to get to.
Our assisted living facility provides a number of opportunities that allow them to keep their independence, stay fit and healthy and enjoy the things they love with a lot less difficulty. They’ll feel part of an active community with the option to participate (or don’t!) whenever they want to.
“What if it costs too much.”
Even if their mortgage is paid off, your loved one is still likely dealing with a number of home ownership costs that they may not realize. They could be thinking that they’re giving up a home they live in for free to pay for a senior living community. Utilities, property taxes, insurance and general maintenance are all ongoing costs that add up. Not to mention if any changes need to be made to the home to accommodate their various needs as they age.
Our senior living communities offer affordable rates starting at $80/day with various levels of care provided. These rates will not only cover where you live, but also include amenities, food and care that are all additional costs the longer a senior stays in their current home.
“I may not fit in with the other residents.”
No matter how old we get, it’s human nature to want to fit in. Feeling comfortable in a surrounding with all new people isn’t easy, but there are ways to reassure your loved one.
To start, keep them involved in the search and bring them along for visits and tours. The more they see the assisted living environments and the more people they meet along the way will help them feel more comfortable with the decision. Secondly, encourage them to keep in touch with old friends and invite them to visit and enjoy the amenities together. Make sure they also know that you’re close by and happy to visit too! The more familiar faces they get to see, the easier the transition.
When your loved one says they’re not ready for assisted living, they aren’t saying no. Instead, they’re giving you an opportunity to ease their underlying concerns and show them all the benefits to live a happy, healthy life in their next chapter.