As we age, our parents age as well. At some point in time, you may begin to worry that a parent is reaching the point where remaining in his or her home may be difficult, or even dangerous. Approaching the subject of moving to a retirement home, however, may not go over well with your parent. Many elderly individuals view the need to leave their home to move to a care facility as giving up their independence. One approach that may work to open up the lines of communication on the subject is to take a very practical look at what it will cost for your parent to remain in his or her home.
Everyone feels the effects of the aging process eventually. Everyday tasks become more difficult as our body ages. As a result, in order for your parent to remain in his or her home, adjustments may need to be made. Common modifications include things like adding hand railings and grab bars, improving or adding lighting, opening up doorways and replacing outside stairs with ramps. Houses with a second story may also require additional modifications to access the second story. Consult with a builder to get an estimate of what these modifications will cost. Then get an estimate for any home health care your parent may need in the future. Even part-time or sporadic home health care can get expensive quickly.
Once you have all the facts and figures, sit down with your parent and discuss the issue from a practical, not emotional, standpoint. Sometimes, a parent is more likely to consider the idea of moving from his or her home when viewed from a pragmatic angle instead of from a “loss of independence” angle.