Some folks know what they like and they like what they know. They like being at home and don't want to leave. Is this the case for you, or for your parents?
The question is: how do you help to enable them to stay at home as long as possible?
You know where you are, in a familiar place, and you can go to your familiar places when and where you want. You do not need to lose the sense of control over your own life or recreate it in another location. Of course you will lose different abilities as you age, but these may come on gradually and not all at once.
You may be more alone than you like at home, though. You may lose different skills and need help. You can hire caregivers by the hour or live-in, so you can stay in your own home.
Keep your room, your furniture, your favorite color on the wall, basically things the way you are used to them. Life remains normal. The change will be there, but gradually in many cases, and you do not need to have the jarring experience of a complete change sooner than is necessary. This is more of a "one change at a time" pattern, rather than all at once. It is just more pleasant. You will likely need to accept support for things you become unable to do, but it is easy enough to hire those skills in a caregiver and still keep on living normally.
Your friends, your religious community, your neighbors on the street, can stay as they are in your life if you age at home. Relocation changes everything. There are times this can be for the better. But if this is not needed, you just don't need to change your entire life at once.
Of course you may want to scale down from a large home, if it is too much to care for. You may also need to adjust to be closer to family. But, if these moves are not necessary, why not just relax and stay at home.
What do you need to do, once you discover that you do not have the abilities you once head, to cook, to clean, to bathe, to drive? The most important thing is safety. Falls are very dangerous and can be catastrophic. You can have a safety assessment made and small adjustments to avoid rugs you can trip on or other small hazards. Then you just hire caregivers for the rest and relax. Compare the cost to the expense of a full living situation. It may surprise you that you can have the comforts of home and the safe environment and support you need more easily than you may have thought.
Consider the pleasure of just staying at home to age.
Inspired by an article by Dr. Kathy Johnson, PhD, CMC
Jaleh Neshat, Home Care Assistance, Raleigh, NC, where the focus is on The Balanced Care Method™ for home healthcare or care services in North Carolina. Read more how-to information on care in the home on the website.