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Family Guide to Dual Living Arrangements

One parent needs nursing home care, the other doesn’t. What to do?
December 22nd, 2023

Sell the family home? 

Exploring the option of selling the family home can be a practical solution to finance nursing home care.  Accurately calculating assets, including home equity, is an important step in this process.  This decision should be made after considering all financial aspects and emotional ties to the home.  It is also crucial to involve both parents in this decision-making process to ensure their comfort and agreement with the plan.

Maintaining connection

It is important to organize activities that both parents can enjoy together, whether in the nursing home or outside.  These shared experiences help maintain their bond and enhance their quality of life, despite the change in living situations.  Creating a routine for these activities can also provide a sense of normalcy and continuity for both parents.

Emotional support

Recognizing the emotional challenges of this transition is critical.  Offering steady emotional support to both parents helps them navigate this significant change in their lives, making the process more bearable and less daunting.  It’s also beneficial to acknowledge and validate their feelings, showing empathy and understanding for their unique emotional journeys.

Support groups

Participation in support groups or counseling sessions can be incredibly beneficial.  These platforms allow both parents to connect with others in similar situations, share experiences, and gain emotional support, which can be immensely therapeutic.  These groups often provide practical advice and coping strategies, which can be invaluable during this time of transition.


In the intricate process of managing elder care for one parent while the other remains at home, empathy and understanding are paramount.  This journey is not just about logistical arrangements; it’s about preserving dignity, respect, and love within the family dynamics.  The pathway forward demands a balance of practical solutions and emotional support, underscoring the importance of unity and resilience.  Ultimately, it’s about creating a new normal that honors the changing needs of each parent while maintaining the fabric of family connection and support.  By adopting a comprehensive and empathetic approach, families can navigate these transitions with grace and solidarity, ensuring that both parents feel valued and cared for during this significant chapter of their lives.

(Robertsville, New Jersey-based Theresa McArthur knows firsthand that the life changes we encounter as we age can be difficult to navigate.  She created Guides for Seniors so there would be plenty of information available to help seniors and bring them peace of mind.)


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