In the first Answers for Elders radio show of 2021, managing director DeAnne Clune talks about Seniors Better Together, which teams up with senior living providers across the country to share positive stories of what is happening in their communities. This segment focuses on when and why people need to seek help with their senior loved ones.
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*The following is the output of transcribing from an audio recording. Although the transcription is largely accurate, in some cases it is incomplete or inaccurate due to inaudible passages or transcription errors.
The following is a podcast from a qualified senior care provider part on the answers for elders radio show. And Welcome back everyone to answers for elders radio and I am here with the and Clune from seniors better together and we have been talking their first segment a little bit about senior living and what is the industry like and really what’s the difference between everything and how does it all work? And there’s a million questions, especially now and these days. People are concerned, they have questions, they don’t know what to do with their loved one, and so obviously we’re here to answer a lot of those questions but most importantly, make you all aware of a wonderful new site out called seniors better togethercom and Dan, I am so glad you’re here. So you know, during this time we still have families that are concerned about mom or dad being home alone or living, you know, independently, and maybe they may be a fall risk. They may be concerned about certain things and you know they I would say probably one of the biggest questions that I always get is when is it time? What do I you know, when is the time when I really need to kind of encourage this. And how do we do all this and how do we pick community and all those things? So do you how does this all come to be with families? That is such a great question and I think it and depends on large part on where the person is at in their life journey, in their life stays and what their health condition is. And so, you know, we have a lot of independent living communities out there that don’t offer any sort of care or, you know, assistance on an individual basis, that are really lifestyle oriented, and so these are great communities of choice for people that are just wanting to downsize or relieve themselves with burdens of homeownership or see some more seek a more richer, low, low social lifestyle with a group of that. Then when it comes to, you know, people who have kind of gone into the area of feeling like they could use a little help on a daily basis with it’s just too hard to manage daily things on your own anymore than that’s where we kind of see the crossover into assisted loving and generally speaking, you know, this is really where family members, friends, even spouses trying to take on more of the role. I’m stopping for a community. Sure now that months and heart went to see that’s even. If that’s the case, I want I want people who are actually making the move to be so actively involved and be so, you know, engaged in the choice and be happy with it. Right. I heard a statistic not too long ago and I don’t remember where it came from, so I apologize to our listeners. I’ll have to look it up, but it said something about major decisions for seniors over the age of sixty five in, excuse me, over the age of seventy five. If they’re making a decision over eighty percent of the time they will involve an adult child to be involved in that decision. Is that correct? Yes, I can’t quote a, you know, the dedicated statistic, but in my experience, yes, we do see that, even for independently, they letting people this one. We had opinions of others that they trust. That’s great. That’s great and I think the other thing that for listeners is it’s very, very natural and normal for a senior to want to resist change, even though they might be in a situation where their home is not supporting them, where they might be a fall risk, accident prone. Maybe they’re not you know they’re not doing well in you know their every day you know active of videos of daily living your you know, if you’re an adult time and you’re concerned about your parent, most likely that’s probably the time to start looking at options and one of those options could mean a senior living community. Not all the time, maybe they do well with a little bit of home care or maybe, you know, it’s there’s another option. But one of the things I think that’s great about the senior living aspect of this is the social interaction and I know that being isolated can be a very detrimental thing for a senior. It can provide a lot of risks factors such as, you know, they could fall and nobody’s there to you know, to help them. There’s all different types of scenarios that could happen if the senior is living isolated like that and especially during times of covid you’re probably seeing a lot more in the way of depression and anxiety and things like that. And so, you know, we want to be obviously, you know, help you as listeners, all of our listeners here, to know that there are other options and there’s a million options within the whole senior living world. So the end, is it typically seniors themselves or family members that actually come to you, you know, to a senior living community and want to want more in formation? Where do you find? Mostly? Yes, well, we do have a lot of the seniors themselves or the perspective resident making the initial contact, especially for any dependent living or the our campus style communities that have a lot of options in one place, and for the ones that are more kind of need or care based, we find that it is predominantly a family member who was making those initial inquiries and trying to help in finde their loved one. And I think you know, if I could offer a suggestion about, you know, talking to your loved one if you find yourself in the situation which I have. As humans, it’s human nature. We don’t want to hear the negative. We don’t want to hear what we can’t do anymore right. We want to focus on what we can do and you know, take control of that. And so in talking to your person that you’re very concerned about and you know may have very legitimate reasons for being worried about them living on their own, I think we need to talk to them in the positive in terms of what is it you’re looking forward to? What what is it that you want to do that maybe you can’t be right now? When is it? How do you see yourself living out this next phase of your life and this focus on kind of what can be attained rather than what can wryty law? Well, and I think the other thing that I encourage families to do is when you engage your senior love one, give them time to to prepare for that kind of conversation. I think this springing something on a senior love one, saying you know, we’re concerned about you, and everybody showing up like an intervention doesn’t never, never goes over well. It’s not to say, you know, mom, I know that you fell last week and I’m a little concerned about you know situations, and you know I’ve been doing some research and I’d like to sit down with you maybe next week and talk about some options for your safety and and allow them, apart, to be a part of that dialog. But again, you’re giving them an opportunity to digest what you said, to come forward with and with options and realizing that nobody’s going to make a decision, nobody’s going to make a decision without them being, you know, on board, and that’s the thing, I think that helps senior adjust to a change. Wouldn’t you agree with that? Yeah, that’s a great idea. And the other thing I think people can consider to as really just felling about it in a question for that you know, mom or that you know how, how are you doing, and how? You know, what is it like living here on your own? What is it? You know, what is it? You might might make it better for you, you know, kind of things and kind of help them come to the conclusion of what you’ve learned that that person. Are you going? Can can be very, you know, open minded and truly engaged rather than yeah, no one wants to be told what to do. Yeah, and I think really what this is all about us. I did everything wrong when I was helping my mother, because what I did is I had at all worked out and I went stepped into my Alfa female personality, and I basically told her that, you know, I got it all fixed, mom, everything’s done well. Let went over like a lead balloon. So my consider my encouragement to our family say is realized that if you’re the son or the daughter, you need to stay the son or the daughter help them come to a wonderful opportunity and approaches conversation of you know, I’ve been working on your behalf, mom. I’ve been looking some resources and I’d like to share them with you so that we can, you know, we can come together in a conclusion and realizing that they you know, that is the key with all of this, obviously, is making sure that their collaborative part and I and I’m hope. I’m so glad that you guys are absolutely you know, that’s true. That’s what you encourage. Is that correct? You? Yes, that’s well stated, and I now that everyone who’s had this experience, that they’re typically their parents are another family member, has only the best intentions. That has bind this, you know, really challenging to deal with. Yes, and so, obviously, if you’re if you’re interested in helping your senior love one, there’s communities to check out, there’s different types of areas to look at, Dan. And how do people reach you? Yes, I would suggest going to seniors better togethercom that there is information there, there’s we there’s peer to peer quotes. People who have made this choice already, both residents and family members who participated in the decision and I think that’s really powerful. This isn’t this information we made up. This is real and for me, some real people and we have some QNA areas of the website. We also have some links from our community partners and sponsors that also have reliable resources for you. So the web site or you can email us that info at seniors better togethercom and, of course, check out our facebook Gade, where we really want to encourage active communication and engagement with consumers in search well, and that’s very important, I think, to make sure that you guys, that our families, have full information and we look forward to again deer and coming back and Dan we’re going to talk a little bit about obviously families have concerns today, especially with the you know, the climate the way it is, and so let’s talk about that, talk about a little bit about how the pandemic is impacted senior living and how you guys can still thrive in a senior living community. and Dane will be right back right after this answers for elders radio show with Suzanne Newman. Hopes you found this podcast useful in your journey of navigating senior care. 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Founder and CEO of Answers for Elders, Inc., Suzanne Newman proclaims often, “Caring for my mom was the hardest thing I ever have done, but it was also my greatest privilege.” Following a career of over 25 years in sales, media, and marketing management, Suzanne Newman found herself on a 6-year journey caring for her mother. Her trials and tribulations as a family caregiver inspired an impassioned life mission outside of the corporate world to revolutionize the journey that so many other American families also find themselves on. In 2009, she became the founder and CEO of Answers for Elders, Inc., subsequently hosting hundreds of radio segments and podcasts, as well as authoring her first book. Suzanne and Answers for Elders, Inc. have spent 14 years, and counting, committed to helping families and seniors along their caregiving journeys by providing education, resources, and support. Each week on the Answers for Elders podcast, Suzanne is joined by vetted professional experts in over 65 categories including Health & Wellness, Life Changes, Living Options, Money, Law, and more. Suzanne lives in Edmonds, Washington with her husband, Keith, and their two doodle dogs, Whidbey and Skagit.