It is nearly impossible to be objective when helping a family member make the transition from their own home to a senior care situation. What makes this so difficult?

We have hope for improvement

When we love someone, we never want to “give up” on them. We hold a deep-seated belief that if we keep looking for solutions, treatments, or therapies, our loved one will get better. Unfortunately, the aging process of both and the mind is a downhill path. What makes things confusing is that in our world of information and options, we are compelled to continue seeking solutions. Further clouding the situation is that the downhill decline is not always noticeable. Older adults have good days and bad days. When a loved one has good days, we don’t want to disrupt the quality of life we see them experiencing.

We remember them as they were.

It’s easy for us to take notice when a friend is struggling with caring for an aging parent; when it’s our own parent, we frequently can’t see the obvious changes that are occurring. We remember the strong and capable adult of the past. We don’t want to acknowledge the changes because then there will have to be difficult and disruptive decisions that need to be made.

Family dynamics can cloud the real issues.

Family members may disagree on what care is needed, and it is often the cause that one or more people may purposefully attempt to convince the family to allow the older adult to remain in their own home. Sometimes in-home care is a good solution, and other times it is not a workable or feasible long-term solution. Allowing our own personal preferences to cloud our thinking is not helpful to a frail senior. Enlisting knowledgeable outside help who look at your situation and help introduce you to specific senior care communities will reduce the amount of family conflict.

How you benefit from having a neutral third party.

Referral agencies begin by asking questions to become clear on how they can best help you. Generally, our services are paid for by the provider. Whether you choose to look at options on your own or whether you enlist the help of a referral agency, the rent and care fees stay the same.

The senior referral industry is regulated by the Oregon Department of Human Services. All senior referral agencies require to register with the Oregon Department of Human Services. All agents must meet DHS guidelines to register and must follow the rules set forth by DHS to ensure families are receiving quality information by qualified individuals. Referral agents do not make decisions for you, but they help frame situations to allow you to understand what options you have and they support you in your decision-making process.

Be extremely cautious about searching the internet for options. Placing your name into various websites can launch a barrage of phone calls of solicitations from businesses and agencies that aren’t even of interest to you.