Downsizing for a loved one before a move to assisted living or other senior housing is more challenging when he or she isn’t able to wholly participate in the downsizing process. You can get through it with the following measures.
Start sooner rather than later when helping sort and edit things. Shorter work sessions are best. A move can be particularly stressful and exhausting for seniors. He or she might be very emotional about leaving a home filled with memories. Take baby steps now.
While sorting or before you begin, have a discussion about the items that absolutely must move. Give your loved one as much control as possible. Start making a list of the essentials. Probably towels, bedding, clothing, bathroom items and a few kitchen supplies if applicable. What interests does your loved one want to continue pursuing? Reading, crafting or writing? Be sure to list the materials needed for those interests.
Is there furniture your loved one wants to move? A favorite, comfy chair? Special artwork or other items that will make the place homey? Take measurements to ensure the items will fit in the new space.
Photos and photo albums are important. Your loved one may want to share memories with staff or visitors.
If moving your loved one is more than you can handle, consider hiring a senior moving specialist.
Start the process as early as possible for a smoother transition.