Friday, April 10, 2009

Retirement Homes, Communities: The Good, Bad and the Ugly

Retirement Life Matters was created to help the baby boomer transition into retirement (however you want to define it.) Because we don’t live in a vacuum, it becomes necessary to broaden the discussion.

My mother is an active eighty three year old. She left her condo a few years ago to move back into a house. In fact, moving is what my mom does best. Within months of finding a new home, she finds she isn’t happy and starts scouring for greener pastures.

Unfortunately, her memory is becoming problem. She lives a thousand miles from the nearest family member, so we’re trying to come to a collective decision as to what is the next best living situation for her.

When I grew up, people lived in their own homes until they couldn’t function by themselves anymore. Then, they either moved in with a family member or went to a nursing home. That was the term we grew up with and was the only option when people got older.

In today’s world, there are many more choices. Unfortunately, the terms can be confusing. What’s independent living versus assisted or continuing care? Here are the

I received a promotional DVD in the mail yesterday marketing a local senior Continuing Care Retirement Community. I lamented at the challenge over getting my mother to consider this type of arrangement.

It occurred to me that our parents’ generation grew up with the concept of nursing homes being the place elders were warehoused when they could no longer function. While there is a wide range of new choices, the image of being shuttered off prevails.

My godfather still lives in his home of fifty years refusing to consider any other options. He is lonely and bored, but in his case, refuses to leave familiar surroundings.

I would love suggestions of how children talk to their elderly parents about moving to these newer environments.

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