Difficult Downsizing

"Mom and Dad are moving to a condo soon. They are having difficulty parting with a lifetime of "stuff." How can I help them let go?"

I'm going through the same thing with my Father. We had to have a conversation about some of the things that he has. I think part of the conversation needs to be about the possible feeling of loss. Tell your loved one that you don't expect them to give up their favorite chair or the things that they need and use every day. They can keep their very favorite things. The trick is to help them decide what those are. When you have this kind of heart-to-heart it seems to lessen the impact of the changes. Often when people do scale down, they find life is a little easier as you're not just taking care of your possessions, which can become overwhelming.

Published on December 15, 2011.