What to Do When an Elderly Parent Refuses Assisted Living

An estimated 7 out of 10 people need assisted living at some point in their lives. What happens if they refuse to take it?

Many families are faced with a moment just like this. If your elderly parent refuses assisted living, you’re not alone.

Trying to talk someone into assisted living that isn’t ready to relinquish independent living can be frustrating. At times, it can seem like a lost cause.

We’re here to help. Read on to learn about some of the approaches you can take when your aging parent refuses to move into an assisted living facility.

Give Them Some Time

If things have reached a boiling point, consider backing off for a bit. Give your parent a few weeks to think things through before broaching the subject again.

Oftentimes, elderly parents refuse assisted living because they see it as a loss of independence. Remember that this is a big change and that they may need time to come around.

Present Your Own Feelings

What types of messaging have you used thus far? Have you reminded your parent that living alone is no longer a safe option for them? Have you talked to them about a worsening health condition?

Try a new approach. This time, present your own feelings, instead. You can say things like, “It worries me that you’re here by yourself when I’m not around,” or, “I am struggling to meet your needs and my own, and I want to do what’s best for both of us.”

By framing the transition as something that they could do for you, it may take some of the edge off of the growing need for assistance.

Look at Different Assisted Living Options With Them

Another reason that your parent may not respond well to your push for assisted living is that they feel like they don’t have any say. It’s important to include your parent in the search for new living arrangements so that they maintain a sense of independence and dignity.

Take the time to research different options with them. Consider something like a home care agency for parents who want to age in place. They may not realize that assisted living doesn’t always entail moving to an assisted living home.

Ask for Help

Sometimes, it’s less about the message and more about the messenger. Your parents may struggle to hear you out because they are your parent and you are their child.

If possible, ask for someone else to step in. This could be a close friend or relative or it could be a religious leader or doctor. Coming from someone else, the message may become easier to absorb.

Don’t Give Up When an Elderly Parent Refuses Assisted Living

It’s hard not to grow frustrated or feel defeated when an elderly parent refuses assisted living. Give these tips a try, rather than giving up on the mission.

Looking for more ways to approach your parent’s health and wellbeing or your own? Take a look around for tips, guides, and information about a wide variety of health topics, including assisted nursing.

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