How to Painlessly Help Your Parents Downsize

December 22nd, 2016 by John Wilson

Researching assisted living communities in OKC is emotional for many seniors. What is even more emotional, though, is actually preparing for an upcoming move. Many seniors worry about giving up their independence and their prized possessions. Residents’ apartments in assisted living communities in OKC are often smaller than the homes they are leaving behind. Downsizing is one of many necessary steps that must occur before the move. While some seniors look forward to a fresh start, others have a hard time saying goodbye to their belongings. Here are some tips to help your parents get through this emotional process.

Consider Hiring a Third-party Helper

Considering your parents will probably be at least somewhat anxious about the upcoming move, their emotions may be in a heightened state as they go through their belongings. They may lash out at you, even when you’re trying to help them. There are professional move managers you can hire to serve as a mediator and keep the downsizing process moving forward instead of reaching an impasse. Move managers help everyone stay calm and focused and can offer advice based on their experience helping other seniors transition. For example, they can point out some items seniors want to take are already available in assisted living communities in OKC. They can leave those duplicates behind to make room for their most cherished possessions.

Understand adjusting to assisted living takes time.

Adjusting to assisted living takes time.

Be Honest, Then Be Practical

One reason downsizing can be stressful is seniors are adamant about handing down a great number of heirlooms, even if the intended recipients don’t want them. If your mom really wants you to have her collection of crystal figurines that you repeatedly explain you don’t have room for, what’s the harm in graciously accepting her gift and driving it to the nearest Goodwill? She never has to know. If she visits your home and asks about the missing heirlooms, explain you like to change up your décor seasonally and they are in the attic for the time being.

Appeal to Their Charitable Side

Are there causes that are near and dear to your parents? To make it easier for them to part with possessions, try to convince them to hold a garage sale to sell some of their belongings and donate the proceeds to their favorite cause. Also research local thrift shops. Many are affiliated with organizations that aid domestic violence victims, food pantries or veterans organizations. Donating items to those places will benefit these groups.

Adjusting to assisted living takes time. Try to use the downsizing process to point out the many things they have to look forward to in senior living. They’ll have someone cook and clean for them, they’ll make new friends and have access to social interaction anytime they want it … during the transition try to focus on the positive. If you are still researching assisted living options, contact us at Village at Oakwood. Our affordable assisted living in Oklahoma City is one of the city’s most popular options.

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