Is It Time for a Move?
This section is an overview of housing and care options for your loved one. In the menu on the right, you will find a variety of living environments to suit different care needs.
Making any type of move can be an emotional roller-coaster. You may feel relief that your loved one will be safe and be receiving the care they need and, at the same time, you may feel stress, anxiety, and overwhelming guilt if you are not the one giving the care. Many caregivers are also dealing with the fear of being alone and being separated from their spouse for the first time.
It is important to note that feeling unsure, frightened, worried, or second-guessing decisions is quite normal. You are not alone.
If you would like to talk with other caregivers about their experiences with Long Term Care (LTC), a Caregiver Support Group may be helpful. Our meetings focus on the needs of the caregiver in a safe, non-judgemental, friendly environment. Please call Caregivers Nova Scotia to find out about our 20 peer support groups that meet across Nova Scotia each month.
If you have made the decision to make any type of move, it has not been made lightly, nor without much deliberation, reflection and discussion. And for most caregivers, a lot of guilt. This article from Elizz, Kicking Family Caregiver Guilt to the Curb may give you deeper insight into ways to look at guilt and how to manage it. As explained in the article Our Family & Friends Don’t Get It, no one understands a caregiver like another caregiver! Chances are, the decision to move has come about because your loved one is no longer able to live alone safely or you, as the caregiver, may no longer be able to provide the level of care required. At this point, it is all about safety for both you and your loved one.
This may be the first stage of the moving process and you are looking at downsizing; or it may be time to transition to a long-term care facility because the level of care your loved one requires has escalated to a point beyond your capabilities. Whatever stage you are in, recognize that although none of it will be easy, it will be doable. You both will survive and even thrive if you are open to this change.
Remember, change is not the enemy. As author and motivational speaker Jim Rohn said, “Your life does not get better by chance, it gets better by change.” Yet we tend to avoid change because we are afraid of it or reluctant to face it, rather than accepting and embracing what lies ahead. The article Embracing Change by Dr. Jamie Huysman, puts change into perspective for caregivers. We have many negative preconceptions about change, especially those associated with aging and living accommodations. Why? Is it because we feel a loss of control? Do we have negative or unpleasant memories about visiting a relative in a nursing home and the sights, sounds, and smells associated with those visits? Don’t let these unpleasant memories stop you from making this important and necessary decision when the time comes.
Don’t let fear dictate what you know you need to do. Trust that you have made a difficult decision, but for the right reasons. As spiritual leader Teal Swan said, “We do not fear the unknown, we fear what we think we know about the unknown.”