45 Ways You Can Help Your Parents Avoid Loneliness

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Are you worried your mother or father is lonely? Does she complain no one calls her, her friends have passed on, she has nothing to do? Does she look sadder than usual? There are lots of ways you can help.

Study, after study has shown that the most important factor associated with human happiness is not money, power, fame or achievement. It's creating and having deep and meaningful relationships with family, friends and community.

So, how can you help your mother or father avoid loneliness? Give them the gift of friendship, connection and social interaction. The possibilities are endless. In that vein, we're going to list all the ways we can think of where you can help your mother or father foster, grow and "lean in" on their relationships.

Let us know if you have any other ideas and we'll add them to the list!

How You Can Help Your Parents Avoid Loneliness

1. Call your mother or father on the way to, or back from, work every day

2. Have your kids say good night to your mother or father every night before bed via video chat

3. Have your mother or father read a bed time story to the grand kids every night via video chat

4. Invite your mother or father for dinner at least once per week

5. Invite your mother or father over for Sunday brunch

6. Invite your mother or father over to watch a movie with the whole family on Netflix

7. Invite your mother or father to watch the grand kids play their soccer, baseball or football games

8. Bring your mother or father along to watch the kids play in the park

9. Bring your mother or father along when you go to the mall or grocery shopping

10. Enroll your mother or father in hobby classes e.g. painting, pottery, wood working, sculpture, birding, etc..

11. Enroll your mother or father in continuing education classes or discussion groups e.g. current events, history, astronomy, etc...

12. Enroll your mother or father in regularly scheduled social games e.g. mahjong, bridge, dominoes, poker, chess, backgammon, bingo, kanasta

13. Enroll your mother or father in a regularly scheduled physical activity e.g. swim, gym, yoga, aerobics, lawn bowling, tennis

14. Enroll your mother or father in a dance class for seniors

15. Help your mother or father volunteer e.g. local hospital, library, soup kitchen, school

16. Have your mother or father join the local Church, synagogue, mosque, or temple

17. Have your mother or father join the local senior center or Y

18. If your mother or father have friends who aren't mobile, arrange for transport, so they can get together routinely

19. Set your mother or father up and teach her how to use Facebook, WhatsApp, Messenger, Facetime, Skype, etc... so she can keep in touch with family and friends far and wide

20. Take your mother or father on a family trip (all girls trip, all boys trip, or all family trip)

21. Make sure your mother or father comes to all of the kid's birthday parties, plays, graduations and other seminal events (even the friends only ones)

22. Have your mother or father babysit the kids at your house or hers

23. Have the kids call your mother or father with their report cards

24. Take you mother or father out to a play, concert, museum, sporting event or movie

25. Take your mother or father out for coffee

26. Take your mother or father out for a picnic

27. Have your mother or father give you and the grand kids a tour of where she/he grew up

28. Ask your mother or father if she can create something for you that you would appreciate like a blanket, scarf, or painting

29. Record your mother or father giving an autobiography of her life and explanation of her family tree (can be a multi-session event)

30. Consider getting your mother or father a pet. Not only does a pet offer companionship, there's a whole network of pet owners out there she can bond with

31. Have your mother or father help cook holiday meals with you or vice versa

32. Ask your mother if she can cook (buy her the ingredients) your favorite meal or dessert for you and the grand kids

33.. Ask your mother to teach you and/or your kids how to cook her famous dishes, so they stay in the family!

34. Create a buddy system in your mother or father's apartment, so neighbors check up on each other

35. Have your father take the kids fishing or hunting (or any other activity) on weekends

36. Have your father or mother drop the kids off, or pick them up, from school

37. Go for a regular weekly walk with your mother or father

38. Drive your mother or father to a friends so they can go for a regular weekly walk together

39. Have your mother or father go on a seniors trip with their friends

40. Have your mother or father join a seniors travel club

41. Have your mother or father join a social club like the Lion's Club, local Veterans Club, Red Hat Society, Toastmasters International

42. Consider having your mother or father move into a seniors residence, where they may find it easier to participate in group activities

43. Use Meetup.com to find groups and activities in your area

44. Encourage your mother or father to try online dating - help set up their profiles!

45. Encourage your mother or father to work part-time

So what's the recipe to help your parents avoid loneliness? The same as yours. Give them your time, love and support. Help them stay close to and involved in the family. Help them stay in touch with their friends and make new ones. Help them get involved in the community. The possibilities are endless!

 


  1. Good morning,

    Another great option would be to hire a companionship service that brings recreation and social visits to your parents. This solves the loneliness problem by giving your loved one consistent social engagement with someone who is as vested in their well-being as you are.

    My company Senior Life Enrichment Consultants offers tailored in-home recreation visits to older adults in Northern Virginia as part of a well-rounded care management plan. Our sessions are fun, engaging, meaningful and relevant.


    • If people have the budget for it, it's a great idea Adriana. That said, we still believe that nothing can replace the fulfillment of time spent with family and friends. However, we understand that that's not a 24X7 option for everyone. Your service can be a great alternative.

      Thanks for letting our readers know about it!

      Marc & Trish