If your senior parent recently lost a spouse, sibling, partner, or friend, they may grieve on Valentine’s Day. Being alone after years of companionship makes seniors more vulnerable to depression or anxiety. It can be difficult for seniors to discuss their grief, especially with their children. If your senior parent is depressed on Valentine’s Day, here are some things you can do to help:
Get Them In-Home Care
In-home care is fantastic for seniors living at home as they get older. When seniors have in-home care, they get daily social interaction, which means they need to stay mentally and physically healthy. Loneliness can increase the risk that seniors develop heart disease, high cholesterol, and other mental and physical health problems. Seniors won’t be lonely when they have in-home care. If you can’t be with your senior parent each day, a home care provider can be.
Ask About The Person They Lost
Talking about the person they lost can help seniors grieve. Ask what their favorite memory of that is, or ask them to tell you a funny story about that person. Go through old photos or home movies and ask questions about those. It will help your senior loved one feel better and help them talk about the person they are missing. And you may learn some fun things about that person that you didn’t know before.
Try To Make New Good Memories
Another way to make Valentine’s Day less sad for seniors grieving is to make some new good memories, so that your senior parent doesn’t associate Valentine’s Day with loss. Take your senior parent out to lunch or take them out for a special event, like a concert or a movie. Or go for a spa day and get facials and manicures, and then go have hot chocolate or some other treat. Do something to give your senior parent a reason to smile even though they are sad.
Continue An Old Tradition
If your parent is gone or your senior parent’s partner or spouse used to do something special for your senior loved one every year for Valentine’s Day, you can continue their tradition with your own unique twist. For example, if your senior parent got roses every year on Valentine’s Day from their spouse, keep that tradition going by giving your senior parent sunflowers or daisies. If your senior parent used to get jewelry every year this year, give them a charm bracelet, and each year give them a new charm for the bracelet. Honoring an old tradition while making it uniquely yours will make the holiday special again for your senior parent.