How Do We Manage Feelings of Guilt and Sadness Over Placing Mom Or Dad in Assisted Living?

Moving your parent into a nursing home or facility for assisted living in Winston Salem might be one of the toughest decisions you’ll make in your life. But it’s absolutely necessary if caring for them at home becomes dangerous or nearly impossible.

Even though you know in your head that this decision is best for their health and yours, your heart may be telling you otherwise. If you’re feeling guilty and sad, there are ways to help you make peace with your decision.

There are three common reasons why a caregiver might feel guilty about moving their loved one to assisted living.

The first one is “You’ve failed in your duty to care for them.” You may feel way because you promised your parents that you would always take care of them.

Here’s the thing. You haven’t failed. Quite the opposite. Moving your parent Mom or Dad to assisted living means you’re making a smart decision to get them the level of care they need. You can still spend as much time with them as you can, and manage their overall care.

Another reason to feel guilty is because you think, “You’re not as good a caregiver as you should be.” These feelings crop up when you compare yourselves to others, who are caring for a senior at home. You may also be hearing complaints from other family members who think you’re being lazy, or just don’t want the responsibility any more.

Here’s the reality. You are a great caregiver. It’s not fair to compare yourself to others since every person’s situation is unique. It’s also not a good idea to pay attention to the opinion of other family members or friends who don’t help out or understand the real situation. The reality is that your parent may have more serious health problems or need a higher level of care than you can provide.

It’s time to take action if your health starts to suffer, or if someone could get injured. Placing your parent in assisted living protects the health and safety of both of you, and allows them to get the care they need. Remember – if you don’t care for your own health, you’re not going to be able to keep caring for theirs.

A third reason children often feel guilty is because, “You feel their health wouldn’t have gotten worse or would have improved if you hadn’t made the move.”

The truth is that things would be different if your parent were still at home. But that doesn’t mean things would be better. Often times, the situation could be much worse. Remind yourself that you made this decision to protect their health (and yours), and to keep them safe.

As long as you understand where the guilt comes from, you’ll be able to accept the decision over time. Then, you can relax and have peace of mind about placing your parent in a facility for assisted living in Winston Salem.


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