How to Best Help an Aging Senior Make the Move to Assisted Living

Making a major life transition is going to be difficult, no matter the age. Even if this is something you are excited about, it can and will be stressful. For an aging senior in your family – perhaps your elderly mother, father, spouse, sibling, or other individual — moving to assisted living can be traumatic.

It can be extremely stressful. It can cause depressive symptoms for some individuals. Yes, some elderly men and women might very well be enthusiastic and excited about the prospect of this new living environment, but a number of them will feel worry, doubt, and even anxiety.

On top of all those emotions, you also have the physical challenges aging men and women will face. It’s not going to be feasible or even practical for a person in their late 70s or 80s to be moving furniture. They need help.

There are plenty of ways to help and elderly person move to assisted living.

First, be supportive and encouraging.

Assisted Living Mobile, AL: Making the Move to Assisted Living

Whether this was your initial idea and they came around to realize the value in it or you are still not certain whether assisted living is the right elder care option for them, be encouraging. Be supportive.

If this senior has decided assisted living is right for them, even though you might think it’s not worth the expense or it’s too far away from you and you are not going to be able to visit as often, or whatever the excuses happen to be, remain supportive.

Remember, this is about them, not you.

Second, enlist help on move in day.

The senior may need a lot of help long before their actual move in date. They might need assistance moving furniture, putting together a yard sale or garage sale, donating items to their local Goodwill or other donation center, selling them on Facebook Marketplace or Craigslist, finding family or friends, grandchildren or even great grandchildren who might need items for college, their new apartment with their new job, or something else like that.

Find help if you are not available. Even if you are available to assist in these weeks leading up to the move in date, having more help makes a load lighter for everyone, especially that senior.

Third, listen to that aging person.

Too often we get caught up in our own ideas, our own prejudices, our own misconceptions, and even our own thoughts that we fail to listen to another person. When you find yourself talking to that senior about assisted living, the things they might be able to do, what they need to get rid of, what they need to take or keep, and so on, you are less likely to be listening to what they actually have to say.

Slow yourself down. Pause. Stop talking so much and learn to listen more. When you do, you will often discover ideas, thoughts, and emotions that elderly person is experiencing that you never thought about before. It could help you be even more encouraging and supportive of them for that move-in day.

If you or an aging loved one are considering Assisted Living near Mobile, AL, contact Ashbury Manor Specialty Care and Assisted Living at 251-317-3017.

About Cindy Johnson

Ashbury Manor’s Administrator since 2008, Cindy Johnson is a long-time expert in the assisted living field. Prior to her arrival at Ashbury Manor, Cindy managed acquisitions and crisis management for existing and new larger senior care project developments for eleven years. As regional manager for an Oregon-based assisted living management company, Cindy was directly responsible for operations for five 50-65 bed assisted living facilities. As manager during the transition to new ownership, Cindy reorganized internal operations and conducted leadership training for Executive Directors. As a result of her management and expertise, one of the company’s facilities (in Ocala, Florida) received a deficiency-free survey, resulting in the lifting of a moratorium on operation.

A nurse for 36 years, senior care has always been Cindy’s passion. Desiring to work more closely with residents, Cindy became a Category II Administrator in 2005. As Ashbury Manor’s Administrator, Cindy understands the complexities associated with dementia and cognitive impairment and she has fallen in love with seniors with dementia or cognitive impairment and their families.

Cindy is Treasurer of the local “Senior Coalition” chapter. She enjoys mentoring new candidates who want to become administrators.

As a 16-bed facility, with Cindy's training and experience, our residents and their families can be sure Ashbury Manor’s carefully selected staff provides the expertise of a larger facility while maintaining the individualized personal care of a small special needs home.
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