Making the decision to move an elderly family member out of their home is difficult but is more often than not necessary for reasons of health and safety. Below you will find important tips for a smooth transition.
Tip 1 Helping The Elderly Move: Communication
This is by far the most important point in the beginning. Open and honest communication about why the move is necessary and brainstorm together what will work best. Always bearing in mind that your relative is likely to have very mixed emotions about moving. Validating their emotions is important. Be understanding and really listen to their desires. Together, set up a concise plan.
Tip 2 Helping The Elderly Move: Enlist Support
Reach out to other family members to help with the move, the more the merrier as they say. Also consider the support of a professional organizer. They are skilled in this type of situation and have a lot to offer in terms of advice as well as strategies for an easier transition.
Tip 3 Helping The Elderly Move: Clean and Organize
As you begin to sort and pack be sure to clean the items before storing or taking them to the new home. Some items will be harder to part with than others, this is true of anybody but for someone who may have a lifetime of memories in their home it is daunting. Listen with patience to the stories the items have and offer reassurance that things that are not going with then will be well looked after.
Tip 4 Helping The Elderly Move: Be Aware of Emotions
You’ve planned, you’ve packed and moving day has arrived. Be aware of the emotional state of your elderly family member and understand that it will be a difficult day. If your elderly relative is moving into an assisted living situation work with the home to plan what the day will look like. Many places will have supports in place for the move, there may be activities for distraction and they may also be paired with a new buddy for the day to introduce them to their new surroundings. If possible it may help to arrange furniture as closely as possible as it was in the old home. Ensure that photos are hung and important items are put away.
This is a tough transition for all and it isn’t over the day the move happens. You will want to keep a close eye on your relative over the following months as the emotional fallout can be heavy and overwhelming.
If you are facing the challenge of helping your elderly parents “smart size” into homes that are manageable, often emotional ties to furniture and keepsakes make it difficult and challenging for you and your parents to make decisions. We often hear the question “how do I even begin to sort through my treasured items and memories?” That’s when we can step in. Reach out if you need support.