Last month, our Senior Living Advisor, Cindy Kohll Persky, wrote aboutA Place at Home’s Senior Living Alternatives program and how it works. This month, Cindy shares one of her success stories about a couple who were married for 53 years and needed to find a new place to call home.
Here’s the story of Sam and Marlene.
What would you do if your spouse was having memory loss? Do you think you would be their sole caregiver?
Maybe these are questions that you might have never asked yourself. However as the Senior Living Advisor at A Place at Home, I see this situation often.
Recently, I received a call from a man named Sam. Sam has been married to Marlene for 53 years. They were living in a house and Marlene’s memory had been failing for the last few years. She was diagnosed with Alzheimers in 2013. Sam could no longer leave his house without Marlene. Sometimes he would run to the store for about an hour, but he knew that it was no longer safe for her to be alone. Sam enjoyed playing golf with his friends but now it had become difficult because of Marlene’s memory decline.
I sat down with Sam and Marlene at their kitchen table in their home. We discussed options. Did he want to hire in-home care for Marlene or move to a Senior Living Community? Did he want to move with or without her?
Sam said that he was tired of taking care of a house and worrying about yard work and snow removal. He wanted to simplify his life and still have his independence without worrying about Marlene’s safety all the time. It was also important for him to reside with her.
Sam provided me with his budget and location. Together we narrowed down the options based on their needs. Next, I set up and accompanied Sam on tours of three Senior Living Communities. Sam and Marlene each had Long Term Care Insurance. Long Term Care Insurance can only be used if a “care” is needed. So, Sam chose a community that had Assisted Living apartments so that they could share an apartment together. Sam moved in at care level 0 and Marlene moved in at care level 3. Marlene’s long term care insurance started kicking in upon their move-in while Sam’s policy would not be active yet.
Today, Sam goes golfing with his friends and knows that Marlene will be safe in their Senior Living Community. He can still reside and spend time with Marlene but is no longer her sole caregiver.
*Names have been changed to protect the privacy of the couple.