When we’re young, we’re used to seeing our parents as the picture of health. They’re always there for us to lean on - whatever the reason.
As we reach middle age, though, we start to realize that our parents are becoming more frail and entering the stage of their lives where it’s now our turn to ensure their well-being.
The process of arranging proper care for elderly parents can be one of the most jarring a person has to go through. Many of us are already dealing with so much - kids, work, economic uncertainty… But these daily stresses are nothing compared to the emotional and financial issues surrounding our responsibility to our elderly parents. In fact, many people point to this process as the moment in their lives where they finally realize what it truly means to be an adult.
Everyone wants what’s best for their parents but, unfortunately, it’s usually not that simple. The ailments that affect the elderly, be they mental or physical, can often creep up slowly. It’s not uncommon to wake up one day and realize that one or both of our parents are no longer in a position to properly care for themselves, and when they need help, you may be the one that has to step up and arrange that care for them.
But where to start? The Yellow Pages? Spending hours driving around to look at different facilities? It’s also not uncommon for there to be disagreements between children and one or both of the parents as to the best course of action. Much as we would wish otherwise, financial considerations sometimes also have to be taken into account.
Fortunately, at this challenging time there is a remarkable organization dedicated to helping everyone involved in this decision. It’s called A Place For Mom and its mission is to provide seniors and families with one-on-one guidance and assistance as well as comprehensive resources about senior housing and elder care options so that you can make the best decision for your loved ones and for yourself.
The company, which is based in Seattle, has offices in 40 states and employs over 300 Eldercare Advisors. They work directly with seniors and their families on a one-on-one basis to analyze the individual needs of the family and prepare a variety of options taking into account medical, financial, geographic and other important factors.
The many options they can help walk you through include assisted living communities, Alzheimer’s care, nursing homes, respite care, retirement communities, residential care homes, home care, and hospice care.
This personalized service is offered free to families, as many of the nation’s care communities reimburse the company for its services. A Place For Mom has been so successful at meeting this need that they have grown to be the nation’s largest elder care referral service.