Article Rich Health Talking to Your Loved Ones About Residential Care

Talking to Your Loved Ones About Residential Care

One of the more difficult aspects of having loved ones get older is the possibility that they might lose the ability to look after themselves in the way they once could. This might then mean that they’re in need of residential care, a conversation that is notoriously difficult to have. It’s not just about struggling to ‘break the news’ to them about this being a likely direction; it’s also an outcome that you might be on the fence about.

So, understanding how best to talk about this sensitive topic with them can help it be more of a conversation and less of something you feel you’re imposing on them.

Choosing With Them

Part of this conversation is going to be about how this move is framed. For example, people are naturally going to react badly if they get told that you’re planning on moving them into a care home. However, making it more of a discussion, understanding what they would want from this or why they don’t want to do it, and voicing why you might see it as necessary can help it feel more constructive.

This is a conversation that’s inevitably going to be difficult to have, and that means that you have to be aware of how you can treat it with the delicate approach that it deserves. While you might be concerned about discussing it, being empathetic and remembering how they must be feeling can help you take a more considerate view.

What They Need

While working together to make sure that the residential care facility is both one that’s realistic and to their taste is important, you might find that there are other needs to consider – primarily, what they actually need. For example, while there are more general care homes that can simply suit people who aren’t as mobile as they once were, there are also examples like St Peter’s Care Home in Bury St Edmunds that specialize in dementia care.

You might find it useful to use these needs as a foundational component of the discussion – the non-negotiables. You might need a home capable of meeting their needs, but from that, you can begin to work in different preferences, so it doesn’t feel as though your loved one has no say in this transition.

The Location

While the immediate focus might be on the care facility itself, alongside everything that this can provide, you might also be neglecting the wider location. It could be something that you think about in regards to how easy it is for family members to visit them, but there are other factors to consider. 

Your loved one might, for example, feel especially strongly about their new home being close to the sea. This is something that people often find comforting, but it also has the potential to be beneficial to mental health, which could make it worth consideration – though that obviously is going to depend on where you’re currently situated and how realistic it is financially.