Daily calls can offer reassurance

phonecroppedMany single or widowed seniors continue to live in their home well into their 80s and 90s. In fact, living alone has become more common for all age groups over the past 50 years.

Single seniors who are older and consciously make the choice to live in their own home in later years often do so because they feel a sense of comfort, routine and familiarity. Their home may have been a place where memories were created— husbands and wives shared dreams, children were raised, family meals were served and friends gathered.

Over time the aging process forces most seniors living alone to make small accommodations to address physical changes. The television volume may be higher; hard-to-reach shelves may be used less frequently, and commonly used items may be left out rather than being put away every day.

There is one consequence of physical change due to aging that is harder to address—falling in the home. Changes in vision, dizziness from medications, reduced strength or balance, and...

Dealing with ‘no’

Pastel-Flexible-Drinking-StrawI often tell people that I’ve been blessed with great parents, not just because they are fine examples of human beings but because of their willingness to embrace change as they age.

When my sisters and I suggested we hire a geriatric care manager to recommend ways to make it easier for our dad to live with Parkinson’s, they agreed.

And when we suggested they move from their beloved retirement home in Cape Cod to a place that would be easier for our dad, who uses a wheelchair, to navigate, they took some time to consider and then decided that made sense.

It probably helps that my dad’s an engineer and uses logic to examine situations and that my mom puts his needs ahead of her own. It certainly makes for an easier time for my two sisters and me.

However, as we work with families at Senior Concerns, I can see this is not always the norm.

Quite often adult children come to us frustrated, angry and out of ideas on how to convince their parents to do the right thing—stop driving,...