While strong-willed seniors may be difficult to handle at times, it’s important to always keep an open line of communication and to try to understand where they are coming from. Often we forget they have valid concerns when it comes to changes in their lives and this is when we should stop and re-evaluate our own behaviors when it comes to their attitude. Instead of arguing, try these tips when dealing with a strong-willed parent.
Take It Slow
First, don’t wait until the last minute to discuss serious issues, like moving into an assisted living community. Instead, pick the appropriate time for the discussion and lead into it. If you are worried about their reaction, don’t continue to delay the conversation until it’s too late.
Expect that this topic may take days, weeks or even months to discuss. Don’t rush it. The more you push, the more a strong-willed parent may want to dig in their heels and refuse to see things from your perspective.
It seems like such a simple tip, but when we have our parent’s best interest at heart, we often talk over them and forget to listen. Listen to what’s important to your elderly loved one. Let them share their thoughts. Allowing them to express themselves can make communication go much smoother. You should also ask about their preferences and needs. As a senior, they may have different needs and desires than you might expect.
Put Yourself in Their Shoes
Remember, your parents have lived independently for a long time and change can be scary. Pushback is to be expected, especially when discussing assisted living options.
The Arbors Assisted Living communities understand communicating with your senior parents can sometimes be difficult. Yet taking the time to truly listen, not rushing the process and looking at things from their perspective will can improve communication. To learn more about the Arbors Assisted communities and what we can offer for senior living, contact us today!