The Myth of Independence


There is an African proverb that says, "It takes a village to raise a child. I think it takes a community to support an elder"

- Maureen Osis, Gerontological Nurse and  Family Therapist. 

Fro mthe time we're two and declaring "no"! - or "no way"! until we are two-plus-ninty, we value our independenace. BUt as much as we value this freedcome as we age into our 0's and 90's we neeed to recognize constrinates to our self-reliance, such as increased physical fraility, vision and hearing changs, and losing a riving license. Independence is intrinsically linked to the widely held view that 'seniors shoudl stay in their own homes as long as possible."

We need to ask why  is it desirable to have old people living in old homes? Both the people and the homes need considerable support. And why do we encourage older opoele and their support systems to wait "as long as possible?"  This  implies that we will wait until a crisis occurs. Let's be mor proactive. Thr is wisdom in knowing when and where to make a "smart move."

This in an excerpt from The Myth of Independance originally published in Alberta Views Magazine October/November 2005. Replublshed with persmission from Read the complete article here.

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