Socialization

Today families are often far-flung, living miles and states apart.  As our loved ones age, we often feel the need to be even more connected.  Talking more frequently is important, and, thanks to technology, being together more often, sometimes daily, is possible.  By phone, by e-mail, by iPhone4S/iPad FaceTime, and by Skype, you can regularly check-in, check-on, and connect with your seniors.

My husband and I lived halfway across the US from our parents, but we always stayed in touch.  As our parents aged, I felt it was more and more important to talk more frequently.  And as time went on, I realized how much our parents looked forward to our calls.  I realized that even though we couldn’t physically be together often, we could be together very frequently, sometimes daily, by phone.  I know that the calls were anticipated and appreciated.  And, I believe, they improved the quality of the lives of our parents as they aged.

When having verbal conversations or exchanging written messages isn’t possible, there are other ways to “be with” your senior.  Digital picture frames allow you to include treasured pictures and recorded messages. Hallmark offers traditional print cards that allow you to record a personal message, which is a particularly good for a visually impaired senior.  And sending grandchildren’s art work or a copy of a good report card—by regular US mail or an overnight service—is a treat for anyone to receive.

Jane Brody wrote a wonderful article for the NY Times connecting quality relationships to a more fulfilling life.  This article on socialization for seniors is so well written that everyone should read it!