One of the most challenging situations that seniors today face is when their spouse needs care, but they do not. Many married senior couples are faced with this difficult situation when they realize that their husband or wife needs to move to an assisted living facility. Many times the first question out of their mouth is “can I move with them?”
When senior spouses need different levels of care, it is important that all parties involved are prepared for the options that lie ahead. The good news is, there are some assisted living facilities that allow spouses to move in with their significant other who needs care. However, most assisted living facilities have rooms designed for single individuals, so finding the right space or apartment may be a challenge.
The other thing to remember is that there needs to be a balance so that both spouses are getting what they need. While the main focus may be on the spouse that needs care and on finding him or her an assisted living center that provides them with the care that they need, the other spouse should not be neglected in the process. Both parties need to be considered.
As you search for assisted living facilities, make sure that they also have activities and access to things like public transportation, available for the spouse as well. The spouse needs to still be able to live their life. They need to be able to have social activities, enjoy outings and maintain some of their own independence. Just because their spouse needs care, it doesn’t mean they have to live with the same limitations as their significant other.
While some couples may find a place that works for both parties, others may ultimately consider at home care, if they can’t find the right assisted living complex. There are other spouses who may ultimately have to split up and live in separate places, whether it is permanently or short-term until they find a better solution. With such a complex situation, it should come as no surprise that there is rarely an easy fix waiting right around the corner.
With this in mind, one of the best things that couples can do when they start to reach senior age, is to start looking for possible assisted living centers that will meet their needs. There are many facilities that offer progressing levels of care and that are ideal for individuals who may need more care over time and for couples with differing needs. The more prepared a couple is, the easier their transition will be when the time comes. Many of these facilities do have a waiting list, so couples are often encouraged to make the move earlier rather than later, that way they aren’t in a panic should an emergency occurs that prompts the immediate need for assisted living.
It is important to remember that this can be a very trying and emotional situation for any couple, as most couples will want to stay together no matter what. However, the more proactive seniors can be about finding a possible solution for this dilemma, the easier it will be to transition to this next phase of life.