It seems that most of the people we know are dealing with issues involving aging parents and are discussing solutions that would make sense for their families. There are all kinds of scenarios, from the parents staying in their home and having help come to them, or selling the family home and moving near one of the children, or needing to move into some kind of assisted living situation.
It's all very stressful and involves making difficult and sometimes wrenching decisions, but it can be helpful to find out what's working for other people and spending time discussing options. My mother has found a solution that works for her at Northwest Place, a senior residence on NW 24th and Marshall. It has 46 one- and two-bedroom completely independent apartments and has a surprisingly good dining room. There is a substantial entrance cost (or "buy-in") and monthly rent, but 80% of the entrance cost is refundable should they choose to leave. The residents are all active and engaging, and they readily participate as they can in outside activities. It's worth checking out as an option, and you can't beat the neighborhood for shopping, restaurants and proximity to cultural and volunteer activities.
Details: NW Place, 2420 NW Marshall; Phone 503-220-8100.