Let's face it, Baby Boomers don't want to talk about growing "old" or needing "help", and if you're a Gen X'er, it's hard to even imagine your folks as fragile... but ignoring it is a recipe for disaster!
If you are a Baby Boomer start the conversation now, while you are lucid and can clearly share your wishes for the future. If you are a Gen X'er, you will most likely be making these decisions for your folks, don't you think you should know what those decisions should be?
Today we're going to address how to talk about future living arrangements, from a Gen X perspective. The topic is: How to talk to your folks about their future living arrangements.
Let's prioritize in terms of care and staying independent.
Is is most important to stay in their own home no matter what?
If so, what home modifications will need to be made, if any?
Would they prefer to live with you in your home, and are you even prepared to discuss this option?
Do they have the space and budget for a care provider to come into their home should they eventually require one?
Understand what caregiving requires
Will you be the caregiver?
Will you hire someone?
How will this be financed?
If they chose to move from their current home consider what is important to them: what housing and where?
Move in with friends or family?
Are roommates an option?
Rent or own?
Adult living facility?
Faith based community or other specifications?
Would they want a small kitchen to prepare own meals?
How much space do they need?
Will they need it partially furnished?
Other questions to consider:
Socially, is there a place where some friends have gone or are considering?
Do they want a place close to shops or a mall?
Should it be close to relatives and does that require a move?
Would they rather (and is it possible) to stay in their own community?
If not, what will bring comfort?
Finally, have R.I.C.H. conversations: (filled with respect, integrity, compassion and honor)
First and foremost, you are having this conversation so you can carry out their wishes when the time comes. Try to understand their point of view. It is very difficult to have these conversations, they are discussing losing some control over their independence. Don't let that deter you... while it may be uncomfortable, the comfort in knowing far outweighs the alternatives.
Let them know while it is for them, it is also a gift for you, so you won't have to guess what they may have wanted. They are giving you the confidence to move forward when necessary to fulfill their wishes.
It’s OK to feel uncomfortable, role reversal is new and unique, our aging parents did not come with an instruction manual!
Yes, you can do it, and you all will be glad you did!
Wishing you the best,
Plan Your Story co-founder and partner in planning, one family at a time.