Kansas City Senior Living Myth #2: “I Will Miss My Friends.”
- October 28, 2020
Research company Age Wave surveyed the thoughts and perceptions of the 65+ population concerning Senior Living and found there were five myths that prevailed among this age group.
Over the next few weeks, we will look at these five myths through the lens of those Elders that are actually living in Senior Living communities.
Myth #2: I Will Miss My Friends
The second myth identified by Age Wave, the research and consulting company that studied the 65+ age group perceptions of Senior Living is, “My current home is the best option to continue an active social life and stay connected with friends.”
A dramatic story that exemplifies this situation is a recent story of a 90-year-old woman who became so isolated that she became an easy target of a scam that cost her hundreds of thousands of dollars.
This is a topic that is all too common these days. When individuals are home for long periods of time and the phone rings, they are happy to have lengthy conversations with someone pretending to be friendly. Scammers know how to weasel their way into private information and bank accounts!
Having an active daily social life can avoid these long down periods.
It is a fact that social connections can help you live a longer, happier, and healthier life.
In 2010, Forbes.com published a study showing that having low social interaction is as bad for your health as smoking fifteen cigarettes a day, as dangerous as being an alcoholic, or never exercising, and twice as dangerous as being obese.
As you plan your future, making sure that you do not become isolated is a primary key to good health. The growing research puts a real emphasis on engagement with others. Even for someone considered themselves to be an introvert needs human interaction.
Living in a Senior Living Community provides constant opportunities to socialize. There were three misconceptions unearthed by the survey:
- “I won’t fit in or make new friends if I move.”
- “I will lose connections with family and friends.”
- “I won’t have privacy when I want it in a Senior Living Community.
Making new friends is easier than you think.
There are lots of positive, stimulating, like-minded people living in retirement communities. Daily activities are scheduled so that residents can select from a list of programs where they will have a chance to meet new friends that enjoy the same activity. Whether it is card games, exercise class, book club, or some other activity, there will be friends waiting. There is a niche for everyone.
An interesting phenomenon is that when families introduce their loved one to a community, they may say, “Mom is pretty quiet and usually stays to herself these days.” After move-in, the report changes dramatically. The resident becomes a social butterfly and enjoys multiple daily activities. It wasn’t that Mom didn’t care for those things; they were just not easily accessible.
Family and friends visit residents more often than they visited them at home, especially when invited to share a meal.
So often, families spend their visiting time doing home maintenance when Elders are living at home. When living in a community, all of those things are done by staff. Instead of family members being caregivers, they can relax and be family. This makes for a much more meaningful and enjoyable visit.
Privacy is always available.
Each resident has their private quarters with their favorite things around them. Having personal space and public space allows for a balance that fits the individual. It really is the best of both worlds.