7 Ways To Cope When An Aging Parent Moves In
When one considers moving in their aging parent, it’s a decision that requires careful planning. Even simple things like rearranging the furniture can make all the difference in ensuring they’ll be comfortable in a new environment.
While this will certainly be a big change for parents, it’s important that the children administering their care are prepared for the new environment.
- Consider your budget. Though having a parent move in may save money, you still need to consider your family’s financial state. You’ll have to consider the day-to-day costs your parent will need along with those of your family.
- Set expectations.With your parent moving in, you’ll need to state what is expected of your parent right away. Identify which areas of the house are considered shared versus which are private, who is responsible for which house duties, and the financial responsibilities of you and your parent.
- Identify the level of care needed. Make sure you understand the needs of your parents and what kind of care you should provide for them. You’ll need to keep in mind their daily routine so you know how to best provide for them.
- Avoid parent-child patterns. Even though you’ll be living under the same roof as your parent again, you don’t need to seek approval or share every detail of your life with them. You are the one providing the roof over their head and not the dependent child you once were. Of course, it’s okay to ask your parent for advice or their opinion if you’d like—you’re family, after all—but make sure you’re not doing so to seek approval.
- Don’t be a hero. Just because your parent is living with you, it doesn’t mean they are your sole responsibility. Ask for help from other siblings or family members that can provide care for them as well.
- Talk to professionals. Don’t be afraid to seek professional help as well. If you need to, seek out counseling; talking through what you’re experiencing can help this transition. Don’t let these feelings of sadness, anger or dread overtake you because you don’t have to go through this alone.
- Nurture your relationship. Don’t forget to give attention to your other relationships after a parent moves in. Those relationships deserve the same amount of attention and it’s important to keep a line of communication open to avoid stress or burnout.