Relocating an Elderly Family Member
As time passes, our favorite family members age. With age comes new challenges. In the unfortunate event where an elderly relative is no longer able to care for their current property or themselves, relocation can be the only option. We know this is a difficult time as we have helped move many elderly family members. Regardless of the situation, the important thing is to get them moved in a safe and considerate manner. There may be aspects of moving an elderly family member that you had thought of. Here is some advice to help you think a little closer as to how you are going to make the relocation as smooth as possible.
Many elders have lived at the same residence for many years. If they have, it can often be difficult to extract them from the place of comfort simply because of their personal attachment. Living in the same home for many years has allowed them to accumulate a ton of stuff that will either need to be moved or donated. The process of packing and sorting things can be extremely difficult, especially if the elderly relative is a parent, and the house you are packing up used to be your home. The thing is, oftentimes the relative will be moving to a place that does not have as much space, and you therefore need to downsize the amount that your relative can take with them. For this reason, it is wise to start with the packing as early as possible, so that they are given the proper time to reduce their collection, and make decisions as to what they are going to take and what they won’t. You will need to either get someone in to help them pack if they are frail, or help with the packing yourself. The idea of having a stranger come in to help may well be distressing for a particularly incapable person, so you need to sit down and discuss this with them first before committing to anything.
Once the communication has happened, its a good idea to contact your local moving company and make arrangements for them to assist with the move. The benefit of using a moving company is (1) they will do all the hard work, and (2) it will allow for you to spend more time with the family member. By depersonalizing the relocation, it will make it easier on everyone.
When the moving day arrives, it’s important to ensure that your relative is comfortable with the process. Make sure you’re present to support them through this difficult transition. It can be quite distressing for elders to watch their treasured items being carefully loaded into the back of a moving truck. In some cases, the elderly will want to feel in control of things – even if they are not – and this can become quite overwhelming. The family member may feel like things are being done to them rather than them making their own decisions. On moving day, make sure you support them. They will thank you for it later!
The Journey to the New Destination
It’s important to ensure the elderly family member is comfortable during the relocation. This means packing a bag or box containing everything they could need during the move. For example, does your relative get cold easily? Bring some slippers and a blanket. Do they like certain food? Prepare a small lunch for them and bring it along! During the move, make sure they are entertained with their favorite music, book, or conversation. Try talking about the positive aspects of their new life in the new house or residence. There are many things that you can do to ensure that they are very comfortable and relaxed during the journey, and this will all contribute to a smoother move over all.
Moving elderly relatives can be difficult for various reasons, and you will likely have the specific issues that relate to their individual difficulties covered. Taking an extra minute to go through the move in your head and preparing can be invaluable when troubleshooting the various problems that may crop up when the move takes place.
Do you have other moving tips and advice?
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If you’re faced with the difficult task of moving an elderly family member, contact us for a free moving quote. We would love to help you and your family move forward!