No to the Nursing Home?

By The Advocates

Treating your old folks like children is a bad idea; the fear of being handled this way may cause them to become inordinately obsessed with their independence. After all, who likes being bossed around or belittled?  Who wouldn’t try to avoid it?

Independence run amok is no good either; dangerous is the person in need of help and denying it. We need to achieve balance, an equilibrium between two opposing forces like independence and dependence. We propose that the balance between the two is interdependence, or a shared reliance on each other. That means, neither party is parasitic in nature.

This mindset is important when considering the concept of multigenerational living which, for our purposes, means moving your parents into your own home rather than a nursing home or other care facility. Neither of you need to lose your independence, but rather aim to develop a sort of symbiosis in your home.

Being a valuable, contributing member of a household may help ease the concerns of an aging parent facing the reality of needing extra care who detests the idea of being a burden to their adult children.

While this arrangement may not be possible for every family, it shouldn’t be quickly eschewed for those where it is. According to a Pew Research Survey, one-third of adults in multigenerational homes cite caregiving as a reason for their living arrangement, which seems like a big burden to adult children.

However, regardless of the reason for moving in, 57% of adults living in multigenerational homes say it’s been a very or somewhat positive experience while 26% remain neutral. 60% of parents living with adult children cite the experience as positive. Amazingly, of the 17% of those who responded negatively, only 3% call the experience “very negative”.  

Financial benefits, like expense sharing provide an advantage too and statistically speaking, Americans living this way are less likely to be poor than those living in other types of households. Something to consider for those of us running the family accounting.

So, it seems most families who do this are happy with the arrangement and don’t suffer financially because of it. That’s good. But there’s a bigger reason to consider it.

Regret is a big driver in this decision. I realized my regret, epiphany-style, when I was handed a pair of custom embroidered pillowcases from my grandmother’s trunk after she died. They were obviously special, but no one knew why and the only person who did was no longer with us. It triggered a large wave of remorse that I had not known her better and had not asked enough questions to try.

I’m now motivated to create opportunities for my parents to spend time with my children, hopefully making memories, teaching life lessons, or just telling silly stories, which, even without the other benefits is reason enough to consider multigenerational living.

Get started on a plan today. Schedule your free, no obligation appointment here.