Senior living communities offer plenty of benefits for older adults. Hassle-free living, a socially engaging lifestyle, plenty of activities—all can be found with a suitable facility.
But the decision to move to an independent or senior living community can be a tough one for your adult children to swallow. They may be upset to see you go. They could take it personally. And they might think that you’re making the wrong move entirely.
So how do you talk to your adult children about this exciting new phase in your life? And how can you be sure your family stays strong and healthy during this transition?
That’s what we’re sharing in this guide. We’ll look at five tips for talking to your children about moving into a senior living community.
Table of Contents
- 1. Start the Conversation Early
- 2. Listen to Your Family’s Concerns
- 3. Let Them Know It Isn’t Personal
- 4. Come Prepared to Answer Questions
- 5. Don’t Skip the Finances Talk
- Frequently Asked Questions
1. Start the Conversation Early
Once you’ve decided senior living retirement communities are right for you, you should consider talking to your children. And it would help if you started doing it soon.
One of the worst things you can do is spring the idea on your family without much notice.
And you certainly don’t want to wait until you have to talk about more advanced care.
The Home Instead network’s research reveals that 70% of family conversations about aging only occur after a health crisis or other emergency events. And that can lead to rushed decisions, poor choices, and inadequate care.
Instead, make time to broach the subject. Drop hints now and then. And make time to sit down with your loved ones and speak frankly about the issue. The earlier you start the conversation, the more time they’ll have to acclimate to the idea.
2. Listen to Your Family’s Concerns
Once you’ve brought the subject up, be sure to stay receptive to what’s on their mind. How do they feel about the decision? What are they worried about? And what are their hopes for the future?
Your adult children and family may be supportive. Or they may not be fully comfortable with the idea yet. Remember that your children may not be upset about the loss of physical items or their childhood home. Instead, they’re likely reacting to the realization that you are changing and aging.
In the end, what’s important is that you’re letting them feel heard. These are the most important people in your life, after all. And who knows, maybe they’ll bring up issues that you haven’t considered yet.
3. Let Them Know It Isn’t Personal
Those around you can often misinterpret big life decisions. And unfortunately, some of your family may take your choice to move into a senior living community personally. They may think that your leaving reflects them and the level of care they can provide. Or maybe they think you’re trying to move further away from them.
You must communicate how much you love and appreciate them throughout the conversation. Be clear about your reasons for moving on. Talk about the qualities of a senior living community that you’re looking forward to. And whatever your reasons for moving are, help them understand you’re just ready for a new chapter in your life.
Try to focus on the positives about moving to a senior living community, like:
- Not having to worry about home maintenance
- Paying a single monthly price that takes care of all your expenses
- Enjoying plenty of close-by amenities
- Staying close and socially connected with a vibrant community
- Having care when you need it and independence when you don’t
4. Come Prepared to Answer Questions
As with all significant life changes, there are going to be lots of questions.
- What kinds of living situations are available?
- How qualified is the staff?
- What about money?
- And food?
- And transportation?
In all likelihood, your adult children are going to be asking you plenty. And it’s essential to have answers ahead of time to ensure the conversation goes smoothly.
Be sure to do your research ahead of time. It might also be a good idea to hand out community brochures to help answer those questions.
You may feel overwhelmed at first. But remember that your family is asking these questions because they care about and love you, not because they don’t trust you.
Try to involve your family members in the decision-making process by:
- Asking for help researching the available options
- Inviting them to take tours with you
- Getting their input on which facilities look the best
- Get them to help you make a list of questions to ask while interviewing facilities
5. Don’t Skip the Finances Talk
Money tends to be a touchy subject with families. And moving to a senior living community can be pricy.
But while you might be hesitant to talk finances with your adult children, you don’t want to skip this part of the conversation. Properly managing your money is a vital part of aging.
And if your family is concerned about how you’re going to pay for your move to senior living, it’s just because they don’t want to see you fall into debt during your best years.
Instead of keeping the details under lock and key, be open with your children about how you’re planning on paying. And be sure to research financing options like Medicare too.
Frequently Asked Questions
Below are the most frequently asked questions about talking to your adult children about senior living.
Should You Tell Your Adult Kids How Much Money You Have?
This will depend mainly on your family dynamics.
On the one hand, you want your adult children to know that your move to a senior living community won’t be a financial burden. So do touch on topics like finances and how you plan to pay for your move.
But that doesn’t mean you have to share all of your financial details. Many parents prefer to keep the more delicate points private.
However, be sure you’re starting to think about important topics like how you’d like to settle your estate. You don’t want to be caught in a dire situation without having anything on paper or with your lawyer.
How Do You Explain Retirement to a Child?
Your adult child may not be on board with your decision to move into a senior living community. They may feel hurt and think you don’t trust them to care for you. They may be grieving the loss of their childhood home. Or they may be worried about finances.
It’s your job to make sure they understand your side of the story too. Be sure to tell your children why you’d like to move to a senior living community. Discuss all the critical points like independence, finances, and long-term care.
And be sure you involve them in the decision-making process. At the end, where you decide to live is your choice. But bringing all this into the discussion can help your children feel like you value their input.
When Should I Tell My Child About Finances?
Following the 40/70 rule is a great way to know when to talk to your adult child about your finances.
This rule states that once your child reaches 40 years old and you’ve reached 70 years old, it’s time to start having more serious conversations about aging. Money, of course, should be one of the topics you cover.
Be sure to tackle estate planning, senior living community finances, and outstanding debt along the way.
Where Is the Best Senior Living Near Me?
The conversation about senior living with your adult children may be challenging. Be when you keep an open mind, express your true wishes clearly, and always come from a place of love, your children will be far more receptive to your decision.
The next step is finding the right senior living community for you. And if you’re searching in the greater St. Louis area, The Harbor at Cape Albeon is a perfect choice.
The Harbor independent living community for seniors provides the perfect mix of independence, community, and support during your golden years.
With picturesque views, elegant dining, helpful services, superior medical support, and plenty of daily community activities, you’ll always feel engaged and wonder what each new day will bring.
We also offer:
- Delicious daily meals
- Bi-monthly housekeeping
- A 24-hour emergency response system
- Indoor pool and whirlpool
- Chapel for worship services
- And much more
Want to get a closer look at what life is like at Cape Albeon’s The Harbor? Just click below to schedule your tour today!
For the very best in an independent senior living community in and around St. Louis, look to The Harbor by Cape Albeon.
We’ll welcome you and answer all your questions.