Friday, February 20, 2015

"Aging in place" may not be best

C'mon, honey, there's a dining room.
Older people (and I have a pretty large number birthday coming up) may say they want to stay in their homes, but this may not always be best.

Stephen Golant wrote Aging in the Right Place. He says staying home and as independent as possible may not work for everyone--despite what stubborn older people may request.

Homes may have sentimental value, but be unsafe, lack amenities, have stairs, and require upkeep that boomers cannot supply for their parents--or themselves.

People need to feel that can supply their own needs--including groceries and hiring people.

The problem often is $$$$. Wealthy older people can afford assisted care--$3,000 a month or more. Less well heeled people need to depend on their kids, friends, neighbors, church groups, and so on. Sometimes the kids are old, too.

That was the case with my mother. She could not care for heself (memory) and we could not take her in our homes. She hated animals and we had pets. She had means to go to assisted care for almost 20 years. But this was a struggle--finding a good place and keeping it good. Things tend to change in these institutions.

The best you can expect, Golant says, is to be aware enough to plan your own aging place.

So far, my adult daughter lives in my house--which will be her house eventually. She has her own suite. She shops. But who knows--things change.

My ideal--we used to joke about this--would be older women living Golden Girls style, nice house, cabana boy to get our BP meds, drive us, and make the drinks.

Strangely, I look around--and no cabana boy. No cabana, for that matter. Sad face.

No comments: