In some circumstances, it may be best for your elderly parent if they move into your own home, whether that is so that you are able to care for them, or to prevent the risks of their independent living. However, the change in your family life can be difficult to come to terms with, especially when you have kids. As a working parent, here is what you need to consider when moving your parent into your home.
How will your parent impact your family life?
The first thing that you need to consider is how your elderly parent will impact your existing family life. For instance, living with a parent can put a large amount of financial strain on you and your family, with extra food bills and care costs to consider. You may also have to spend money on adapting your home to your parent’s needs. You may want to ask for financial help from siblings, or even your parents to cover these costs, as well as looking at disability and accessibility grants. Where possible, it would be beneficial to help them maintain their independence. Depending on their needs, it may be possible to make some changes that can make life easier for both of you. Companies like Motability provide support for carers and for people who are classed as disabled, which can result in a cheaper insurance policy for your car.
You may also want to consider impacts as simple as privacy and the lifestyle that you lead. However much you love your parent, you may not be used to them being around quite as much as they now will be, and you may need to factor in how your time and attention in caring for them may mean extravagant changes to your lifestyle.
Is your home suitable for an elderly person?
Not only this, but you need to consider whether your home is safe and comfortable for a senior person, especially if they are in a wheelchair or have mobility issues. Homes can be dangerous places, whether that is from toys being left lying around, trip hazards such as stairs and pets, or the shower in the bathroom. To combat these risks, you may need to make adaptations to your home, such as grab rails or a stair lift. If this is the case, Age UKMobility provides a brochure for a stair lift that can explain to you the different products available, the costs of these, and the benefits to your parent.
What should you tell your kids?
When bringing an elderly parent into your home, it is vital that you discuss the situation with your children, including what changes will be made to family life and what they can expect when your relative comes to stay. If your parent has an illness, you need to explain your parent’s condition, such as dementia, to your children, including what it may make your parent feel like and how this may change their moods.
You need to explain any extra responsibilities that they may have, such as listening to their grandparent or helping them to perform activities. You should also discuss with them how to react to certain situations. However, while discussing this with them, you should make sure that they know that they still come first and are loved, assuring them that their life will not change beyond recognition.