Family Day is on February 20, 2023. A day typically spent with loved ones reconnecting and creating quality memories together. Sometimes, this simply isn’t possible. It’s all too common where older adults live far from their families. This is due to a plethora of personal reasons. What should your parent do when they can’t be with their family? We have some ideas to get them started!

A great way to connect with family who are far away is to call them on the phone! Phone calls are quick, easy, and often free across Canada depending on your plan. Your parent can talk about anything for as long as they’d like and quench that thirst for connection. A video call is another great option and can sometimes be even better than a phone call, with seeing loved ones in real time. Calling family is a great and instant cure for homesickness.

Don’t have a phone? Write a letter! While some may say letters are a dying form of communication, we beg to differ. Letters are a thoughtful way to connect with someone and show them you’re thinking of them. Your parent can write anything they’d like in their letter. While letters may not be instantaneous like phone calls or texting, there’s something so romantic and enticing about sending a letter and waiting for one in return.

Another great way to connect with family is looking at old photo albums. Encourage your parent to take the time to look at each photo and remember the incredible memories they have with other family members. If they’re tech savvy, they could even send some memorable shots to you or other family members so they can share in the memories too. You could also send them some of your favourite shots back!

On Family Day, have your parent do an activity that reminds them of the family! Did your family always have a big dinner on Sunday nights? Order some takeout for your loved one and share a meal together on a video call. Have a favourite movie you always watched with your parents? Make some popcorn, get comfy and throw that movie on by syncing it up on the video call. Doing things that remind us of our loved ones can help us to not feel so far from them.

Spend Family Day with friends! We all have friends who feel like family. Encourage your parent to get out of the house and meet up with some local friends. This way, they won’t actually be alone and can make some fun new memories with some honorary family members.

If your loved one lives far from family, care companionship services can help them feel not so alone and give you peace of mind. Goshenite Care Companion Services can give regular scheduled visits to ensure your parent is in good physical and mental health and that they are well cared for. They also provide a communication link between parents and children. Goshenite Care Companion Services offers fully trained bilingual Care Companions throughout the Sudbury area. Care Companions can provide:

  • Assistance with basic tasks of daily living.
  • Outings such as grocery shopping or going to church.
  • Entertainment such as playing cards or doing a puzzle.
  • Setting up the computer or tablet for a visit with distant family members/friends.
  • Going for walks.

This kind of time spent with someone who lives alone can make a huge difference in their life. Sometimes taking care of family means having someone else spend time with them and take care of them. It doesn’t have to all rest on the shoulders of you, who might not live nearby.

Family Day can be hard for older adults who may not have family living nearby. But with these clever ideas to feel close to family without being physically together, we hope your parent won’t feel so alone this year. No one is ever truly alone!