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The Hurricane of Aging, Start Planning - by Eric Flusche, Director of Supportive Aging Services

Knowing where you would like to live is easy.  Most of us want to live in the home we are already in and few of us want to find ourselves living somewhere unexpectedly.
Unfortunately, wisdom isn’t the only thing that aging brings. It can also bring challenges that can sometimes make staying in the home you love, difficult if not impossible. When a person faces these challenges, knowing where you need to live is not easy to decipher.  
On many occasions it is not the individual, but rather a caregiver, that is making the decision to have their loved one moved from the home that they have lived in for so long and where they have created many memories.  This is certainly not an easy decision for the caregiver, particularly when they have made a promise to their loved one to “never put them in a home.”  The feelings of guilt and the belief that they failed to keep that promise can be overwhelming. 
The decision for a person to move out of their home into another setting will never be an easy one, but it can be made less difficult. As with many things in life, things usually go much smoother when you plan and do your research.  Plan, plan, plan, plan, plan…it can’t be said enough. Some may be asking themselves, “What am I supposed to be planning for?”  The answer is aging.  Though we may joke about getting older, very few of us actually plan on it happening. 

It is similar to a hurricane. I live in Florida where we experiences these devastating stories. It is remarkable how many people are not prepared for this event. The main distinction between hurricanes and aging is that aging hits everyone. So, I say again, you cannot plan enough.  
The living options for seniors needing assistance grows every year.  There are assisted living facilities, family group homes, independent senior living facilities, skilled nursing facilities, and many more. The first part of planning for an alternate living situation is to become aware of the various options available in your community.

The second is to understand that people have different needs and that certain living options are dependent upon individual needs. Living options are not “one size fits all.”
The third part of planning is researching each type of facility. 


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