Mom May Be Crying After Moving into an Assisted Living Community, but Adjustment Does Take Time

The last time you saw your mother a couple of days ago she was in tears. You were trying to help her settle into assisted living, but she was begging you to take her home, get her “out of this place,” and it was breaking your heart.

You’ve known for quite some time this is the best thing for her, and you also are quite aware of her capacity to lay on the guilt, nice and thick. Still, that realization and understanding doesn’t change the fact you feel guilty.

Adjustment can take time.

Assisted Living Theodore, AL: Assisted Living Adjustment

This is true of many life changes. Moving, especially into a place you’re not excited to go, is going to cause stress and anxiety. However, if your mother agreed that assisted living would be the best option for her, she might have a homesick feeling when she starts trying to settle in.

Don’t be too quick to pull her out.

You might go home and feel completely guilty, replaying that episode over and over on the drive, while you try to struggle and sleep at night, and throughout the next day, but stay rooted in the reasons why you and she believed assisted living was for the best at this point in her life.

Give her time to explore, meet new people, take advantage of the activities and entertainment, and she will start to settle in.

Encourage her to explore.

Avoid the temptation to call constantly throughout the day to check on her. She may take that as an excuse to stay where she is and not get out and meet people. Instead, let her know you’ll call to check on her first thing in the morning and then later in the evening.

When you tell her that, encourage her to at least go for walks down the halls, check out the dining facility, and even stroll the grounds, if they have safe places to walk.

When you visit, help her meet staff and some other residents.

Your mother might be an incredibly shy individual who has difficulty meeting new people. Help her to do just that. Strike up a conversation with people, introduce your mother, and help her become more comfortable.

Be positive and supportive.

The best way to offer assistance in this transition is to remain a positive force in her life. Keep encouraging her, don’t point out her negativity but rather ignore it.

The more positive and supportive you are, the easier it’s going to be for her to make this transition and become comfortable there.


If you or an aging loved one are considering Assisted Living in Theodore, 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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