It’s been a rough year, and it doesn’t look like it’s going to get much easier in the upcoming months. COVID-19 has kept lots of people separated from their relatives. If you have elderly parents, you probably haven’t seen them in-person for a long time.
Are there ways that you can keep them company and keep them safe at the same time? Find out what you can do this winter.
Use Tech to Communicate
Anything is possible with tech. As long as your parents own a smartphone or computer and have a strong internet connection, you can easily stay in touch with them. If they’re not familiar with tech, start with small goals like teaching them to download video chatting apps on their phone. Or you can teach them how to send photos and video attachments through text and email.
Once they get the hang of the basics, you can introduce other tech ideas:
- Plan a virtual movie night or TV marathon
- Join an online class together
- Compete in online games together like Scrabble, Clue, Checkers or Bingo
- Introduce them to the best video games for beginners and play together
Plan for the Holidays
The holidays won’t be the same this year, but that doesn’t mean that they have to be a failure. You will just have to find some workarounds.
You can still send presents. If you’re worried about delays with delivery services, you can always send your parents virtual gifts like streaming subscriptions, online class memberships and digital gift cards. All of these presents will be sitting right in their inbox on the big day.
If you normally have a big feast with the whole family, you should plan ahead to host a virtual dinner party with your parents and your other relatives. You can’t share the food, but you can still share the experience with everyone.
Find Solutions for Loneliness
The truth is that lots of seniors are lonely and isolated because of these safety measures. It can be really hard for seniors that live on their own.
If your parent is in this situation, it might be better for them to join a senior community in the near future. Senior care communities like All Seniors Care Living Centres offer safe opportunities for socializing so that your parent won’t feel lonely or isolated at home. They also have the staff and resources to address any of your parent’s needs. Moving into a senior community could be the ideal option for them.
If you’re still worried about your parent being lonely or upset, you can suggest that they call a free mental health support line to share their feelings and get some needed support. These support lines accept phone calls at late hours and keep information confidential.
Sometimes, your parents don’t want to share their personal fears or sensitive thoughts with you. It’s fair — you don’t always want to share everything with them. Giving them the numbers of these support lines lets them know that there’s a resource that they can count on when they need someone else to talk to.
You care about your parents. You can’t handle the idea of them being sad and lonely while sitting at home. Following these steps could make things a lot better for all of you.