Read Liz’s story about finding memory care for her mother. With advice and recs from a Seniorly advisor, Liz found the perfect home for her Mom.
This family interview took place on November 22, 2021. Quotes from it have been edited for clarity.
Moving a loved one into senior living can be a daunting prospect, especially when that loved one is experiencing memory loss. Fortunately, there are experts who can help families find the best memory care communities to suit the needs of their elderly loved ones. Liz was kind enough to share her experience working alongside a Seniorly advisor to find a new home for her mother, one where she could get the care she needs.
Liz’s mother was living with her, and although she was safe and well-cared for, her memory issues made it difficult for her to get out and about. This lack of independence meant that her social interaction was fairly limited to family. Additionally, caring for her impacted Liz’s ability to get out and live a full life herself. Her mother’s deteriorating memory and increasing confusion signaled to Liz that it was time to consider getting professional care.
Qualified recommendations and hands-on help
At first, Liz got a list of communities to visit from someone she found online, but they weren’t what she was looking for at all. “What they did was just emailed me a list of facilities to go see. And so I made a couple of appointments that are geographically close to my home, and I went to see them and both places were like, ‘I can't believe you would even recommend this.’ Liz was disappointed, “I sent the lady an email and I told her that, I said, ‘I know you're not local, or you wouldn’t be sending me to these places.’”
In search of higher quality recommendations, Liz got in touch with Seniorly Advisor Jack Angel. “Jack set up the appointments...We talked a little bit on the phone—what we were looking for, what we wanted—and he set up the appointments and both places that he took us to were great.”
Liz and her brother were particularly impressed with one community and its director, Annie:
“We walked in, all the ladies were sitting at a big table. They were playing bingo or something. I mean, music was going, it was just delightful. It was clean. Everybody was interacting. Nobody was just sitting in a chair or a recliner, like a bump on a log. It became very apparent that this was probably the best place and we better make a quick decision because she only had one vacancy.”
They decided to move Mom into this community...without telling her. This was a tactic Jack recommended based on his experience with moving seniors with memory issues. Annie, the community director offered a further recommendation:
“She suggested that we not come around for about a week,” after moving Mom in, “and let them get to know her and her know them and to settle in. And, and so my brother and I were like, ‘We'll do what you say because you have the experience we don't.’ And so we did, and it's gone very smoothly. We haven't had any problems.”
A better deal
Liz is very grateful for Jack’s guidance: “He's a really nice guy and he set up all the appointments and all of that and went with me.” Jack also “sent a little list of dos and don'ts: what to do, you know, what to tell her, not what to tell her.”
Liz is still navigating VA benefits for her mother: luckily Mom saved all kinds of paperwork, including her husband’s honorable discharge. She warns other families to be wary of anyone charging for VA application help (legitimate Veterans benefit planners are usually employed by non-profit organizations, and won’t charge you for their help with the application process). Despite this, Liz is relieved to have her mother settled so smoothly into her new home.
“My mother is probably happier now than she was living with me. She has people around her all the time, people to talk to. I think she's become more stable. She has more interaction with other people, or as much as she wants. I just think overall it's a better deal.”
Mayo Clinic. “Alzheimer's: Smoothing the transition on moving day.” December 20, 2020. https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/caregivers/in-depth/alzheimers/art-20046610.
Seniorly’s Senior Living experts created a comprehensive handbook to help people age happily while ensuring they love where they live. Enter your email address below to receive your copy and learn more about Healthy Aging and Senior Living.*