It is difficult to know that a loved one is reaching a point in their life and health where they are no longer safe and secure living on their own. This loss of independence is assuredly frustrating for them, as an adult who was able to take care of themselves before changes to their health. Your loved one may suddenly become completely dependent on you to provide stable care for them. This can be extremely disruptive of your life, but the best method of coping with this change is to maintain patience with your loved one. They need your support through this transitionary phase in their life as they come to terms with the changes that need to take place.
According to SeniorAdvice.com, studies have shown that many older adults fear losing independence more than they fear death. Remaining patient is very important as this process unfolds, but another simple way to help your loved one cope is to be there for conversation. Providing a listening ear to your loved one in concern to their fears and concerns not only brings them comfort, but brings the two of your closer to an understanding of how to handle the situation together.
Perhaps your loved one is still in good enough health to maintain some sort of autonomy. There are solutions that provide a sense of security and assistance to your loved one that still allow for them to remain somewhat independent. Here are two options:
- Home healthcare: Promotes normalcy, allowing the patient to remain at home and receive care daily or on a more part-time basis from a nurse who comes to them
- Independent living communities: Offer social benefits and readily available medical care to seniors that can no longer safely live alone, but can still perform many if not most everyday tasks for themselves