Moving is more than just changing your address; it can be an emotional decision that brings out the best and worst qualities in ourselves and the people we love. So how can you make your move as stress-free as possible for everyone involved? In this column, I'll share some strategies to help you communicate with your family and manage any conflicts that might arise.
How to manage resistant family members
In my work as a personal moving consultant, I sometimes encounter family members who aren't happy about the idea of Mom or Dad moving. This usually happens for one of two reasons: 1) family members have misconceptions about senior living or 2) they don't fully understand the stress and expense of your remaining in your house.
I always urge my clients at Oak Crest, an Erickson Living community in Maryland, to bring their families to the community for a tour. You can meet with a sales counselor or simply enjoy a family meal at one of the on-site restaurants. This way, your loved ones will see firsthand what a lively and independent place this is and how happy you'll be here.
Be honest about why you're moving
Communication with your family is key. If you're overwhelmed by the work of maintaining your house, tell your children about it. If you want to enjoy more activities and social opportunities, let your family know.
You don't owe anyone an explanation for why you want to move, but it never hurts to share your reasoning in an open and honest way. Even if you see your family often, they may not realize your day-to-day concerns or understand your wants and needs for the future.
Get your family involved
Ultimately, moving is your decision, but the process will be a lot smoother if everyone in your family is on the same page. A home visit with your Erickson Living personal moving consultant is a great place to start.
During the visit, a personal moving consultant like me will come right to your door at a time that's convenient for you. Together, we'll walk through your house, discuss your concerns, and create a plan of action. About 60% of the time, my clients invite a family member to join us. It's a wonderful way to involve your family from the start and ensure that everyone's questions and concerns are addressed.