Moving your aging adult into your home can be an absolutely wonderful experience. You can help her in ways that were difficult to do before and you’re likely able to spend far more time with her. But there are some ways that this can change your relationship and your caregiver experience, so you need to tread lightly.
You Need to Plan Ahead More
It may seem as if having your elderly family member under the same roof makes things easier and in a lot of ways, that can be true. In many other ways, though, you are going to have to plan ahead much more stringently. There may be issues with sharing communal spaces or appliances, such as the washer and dryer, that you need to work out in advance.
You’ll Need to Keep Communication Lines Open
If you and your aging adult don’t talk about what bothers each of you, there are going to be bigger problems down the line. Resolve at the very outset to approach all conversations openly and honestly. Doing so is going to help you to defuse situations before they get out of hand.
Everyone Needs Their Space
You’re going to need to make sure that both you and your elderly family member have the space that you need in the new arrangement. If there are other people in the home, they need to have their space, too. Moving your aging adult into your home should be about making the situation better, not worse.
Double Check Your Boundaries
Just because your senior is now living with you, that doesn’t mean that you’re on call all day and night, unless that’s what your senior absolutely needs now. And in that case, you’re still going to need some help, either from senior care providers or other sources of assistance. That could mean family members pitching in more often or getting help with other aspects of your life.
Don’t Give up Your Own Life
Speaking of your life, you can’t give up everything that you enjoy and do. If you do that now, you’re going to find yourself suffering for that later. Continue to be who you are and live your life, but still helping your aging adult with this new phase of her own life.
Having your aging family member move in with you is likely the best possible solution. But you need to be alert for how that impacts your relationship with each other.