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As people age to 100+ years, how do they cope with increasing losses of friends & family that died?
How can they keep in contact with other humans and avoid isolation?
The very elderly are prone to isolation, depression and underreported suicide. They may struggle with the need to remain relevant and necessary. Fortunately, many have found ways to stay engaged. read more
Most people that age also have adult children, some grandchildren, and other family members to stay in contact with. There's also nothing wrong with a 100 year old having friends in their 70s and 80s either.
Isolation is a choice and life is what you make it.
Isolation's not chosen by Seniors bedridden in facilities & adult kids refused visits, or died (kids not abused, btw; seniors not addicts & "drunks"). In medical work, I've dealt w/ 1000s abandoned seniors in a 6-county area. New friends 70+
Patty Inglish, MS, Your question didn't imply the elderly person was ill. My grandfather lived to be 103 years old. He traveled to stay with family various members until the end. You asked (how they) can avoid isolation as if they had a choice!
Incorrect, according to grammar rules - "They" means "all people living to 100+" in this sentence, no limitations placed on "They". You didn't consider abandoned seniors. Isolated in Sr. centers can ask staff for help Happy for your grandfather!
My mother lost 4 friends in one summer when she was in her late 80s and really had a hard time with it. I wondered why she was so surprised. Then I realized you can only go through that loss so often before it's just too depressing. I don't have answers but I'm interested in hearing what other people have to say.
Sorry for your mom's loss! Most of my losses came right after high school - 100s in my clubs died in Viet Nam, traffic accidents, cancer. Not enough left of the 625 for 20-year HS Reunion to occur. Made new friends fast, but at age 80? - don't know.
She was very good at filling empty spaces. That summer she just couldn't keep up at that rate. You must have felt the same in your late teens = a much worse time to deal with so much death.
Yes! The mom of one of the guys called me in the middle of the night and yelled into the phone,"He's dead!" and hung up. Nightmares for a few weeks after that.
Recently, my mother of 78 years old married a man about her age and they live in a retirement community. Very luxurious and lunches and dinners are prepared for them in a separate building. I noticed that everyone is always set with another person or group of people, so as to not be lonely. It has affected the way I look at getting older myself, as they are a large group of a sort of family living here. They have a nursing center also, and the effects of being in your 100s and losing so many of your close friends could impact the way you think about living longer, but in this atmosphere, I think it helps to keep pushing on way past the 100 year mark. That is a great question you raised!!
I have lost three members of my immediate family in the past six months, so I have a bit of a better perspective than I might have had on this subject six months ago. One of the ways that I cope with that loss is that I realize that I am still here for a purpose and that it is my destiny, no, more like duty to do those things that I know I have been called to do. I have learned that I need to give more and care more, because every day is a gift to treasure.
Your question reminds me of reading about two sisters who had grown old together. At this point they were living together--wish I could remember their names, I read their story more than 20 years ago--and the interviews revealed very different perspectives.
One sister woke up every morning and said something like, "Oh no, I woke up to another day." The other sister woke up every day with a happy response, "How wonderful! Another day!"
It was interesting to look at their points of view, but to answer your question more directly, belonging to an established local church that has a solid seniors ministry is one way to avoid the isolation you mention.
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