Is it Time to Move In?

Getting older is just one of those facts of life – everyone does it. In some situations, elderly parents who need geriatrics care or therapy are not able to live alone and care for themselves properly. This often happens after a major medical issue that requires extensive care, therapy and maybe even house calls. You may wonder, Is it time to move in? If you or a loved one find yourself facing this situation and aren’t sure how to navigate, there a few major factors to consider.

Health Care Options – This is probably one of the biggest considerations in this situation. Talk with your loved one’s doctor or geriatric care professional to discuss exactly what your loved one will need on a daily basis. If both adults in the home work full time, you may need to consider hiring a home health nurse to make house calls and help your loved one with therapy. Home health care doesn’t just have to be related to geriatrics medical care, house calls can also include daily activities like bathing and laundry.

Another tough subject is the topic of an assisted living facility, which is another viable option, but takes extensive discussion and understanding on both sides and is contingent on your loved one’s mental state and ability to make an informed decision. It is very important to be realistic about your ability to care properly for your loved one to give them the best quality of life as possible.

Role Reversal and Emotional Challenges– When parents return home due to a physical need or the loss of a spouse, there is a major change in roles that occurs since the last time the two generations lived in the same home. Instead of your parents providing care for the children, now the children are providing care for the parent. Especially in the case of a medical condition that has prevented them from independently, the parent may have to be extensively dependent on the child for daily activities and health care. If you are facing this situation, you are not alone. According to, “a survey by the National Alliance of Caregiving shows that at least 22 million households in the U.S. involve family caregivers. ” Don’t be afraid to discuss this with your loved one; they may be self conscious about feeling like a burden to you and your family. Remind them how much you care for them and keep an open line of communication to manage problems when they arise.

Financial Considerations – While this is probably one of the biggest points of contention for families facing this situation, it is hard to give a hard and fast rule to base your decision. My honest opinion is to sit down with your family and have an open, honest conversation. I know that is much easier said than done, but if there are multiple kids making a decision for a parent, each must present their case and what they are willing to contribute to care for your loved one. Adding an extra member to your household can be a financial strain, but so can placing your loved one in an assisted living facility. Seek a geriatric care professional’s opinion and get information about each option so you are properly informed.

What other considerations should you make when a loved one cannot live independently anymore?
is it time to move in