Confronting Loneliness When a Senior First Moves into Assisted Living
Sarah was 76 when she finally, reluctantly, agreed with her oldest daughter that it was time to make a move. She spent more than a few decades in this house with her husband, but when he passed away more than six years earlier, it became a lonely place to live. She had wonderful friends and a great support system, but nothing could replace conversations with him, quiet time together, and more intimate moments.
It took Sarah awhile to agree to even look at an assisted living community. She had this idea she would always live in this house, but she also recognized her own physical limitations. It was becoming more and more challenging to keep up with the cleanliness, prepare food, and even to do shopping.
When she moved into assisted living, she was still feeling lonely.
That wasn’t because of the assisted living facility, but because Sarah spent most of her time alone in her room. She had often been characterized as a shy, withdrawn individual, only coming out of her shell, so to speak, when her husband was there to support her.
She loved spending time with friends and absolutely adored her family, including her grandchildren, but in this new environment she had great difficulty stretching her limitations.
The staff at this facility were well-trained.
They understood the challenges many of their residents face when making this type of transition. They had seen it time and time again with residents moving in, staying in their room, keeping the door closed, and only coming out for mealtimes or to stretch their legs.
While many of these elderly men and women would eventually get out and explore on their own, there were some who needed extra coaxing, prodding, and encouragement. Sarah received that encouragement from one particular female staff member.
This woman took the time to ask questions, engage Sarah in conversation quickly when she saw her, but not to push too hard. She learned that Sarah had once dabbled in painting and there was a desire brewing on the surface to try it again.
When Sarah learned there was an arts activity taking place once a week, she was interested. The first class she attended was a nerve-racking experience, but Sarah was delighted when she became comfortable.
She also met like-minded men and women who helped her become more open, step out of the room more often, and begin exploring more of what this assisted living facility offered.
For more information about assisted living in Alamo Heights, TX, contact Pipestone Place Assisted Living or to take a tour, call today (210) 718-0211.
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