Life is a wonderful thing, filled with joy and love in all sorts of varieties. It also has its inevitable ups and downs that end in tragedy or loss of life, as is only natural. The important part about living is that it is a task we all do together as social animals, playing our own unique roles in this complex and beautiful world. As parents, individuals, and partners, our living situations change throughout our lives in ways that we can hardly imagine.
It is common for many of us to live independently for most of our lives, from the time we’re adolescents to elderly adults. However, it is completely common for elderly people to want to live among citizens their own age and have an easier life. There are many senior living communities in the U.S. and other countries that are happy to provide this type of life.
In this brief article, we’ll discuss what it means for elderly people to seek out senior housing, as well as what distinguishes it from assisted living. The two couldn’t be more different and it’s worth noting why. Lots of seniors would prefer to live in independent housing, but don’t know how to go about evaluating or finding a quality community. Hopefully, with some tips and information that we provide here, the journey will be a tad easier.
The biggest benefit of senior housing for the elderly is that it allows them to continue to live their lives in an independent fashion with minimal supervision, but maximum help if required. Since many elderly people prefer independent living at all costs, this is the best of many worlds. Activities, meal planning, and socializing are all centralized in one location while your elderly parent or relative is allowed to focus on living their life. There are no restrictions on visiting hours or other such parental monitoring because the senior citizens are not locked down in any manner. It is a community that tries to replicate actual independent life while customizing it for older citizens.
Being able to socialize, volunteer, or even work a part-time job without the hassle of maintaining a home and being around other like-minded individuals is another amazing benefit of senior housing. Research indicates that even if seniors don’t want to get a job, they do enjoy volunteering. An estimated 50% of adults aged 65 and over participate in volunteer work, which is more than the national average for other age groups. This allows seniors to continually participate in society and culture instead of being locked away in a residence of their own or someone else’s making. In this way, they stay participants in the community and larger culture.
Regardless of whether you are a supporter of senior rights or not, we can simply come at this from a human freedom perspective and realize that freedom and independence are better than dependence. Unlike assisted living, where a senior may be monitored constantly by medical staff and other personnel, senior housing in independent living communities allows each senior to live their own life with minimal assistance from a formal staff. Until they are actually considered dependent from a medical perspective, most elderly citizens do not view assisted living as a good quality of life exchange.
They do indeed pay a privileged price to live in such places, but it is a paltry sum when compared to the expense of owning a single-family home. They are usually apartment-style or other minimalist efficient designs and located next to other people of around the same age. In a way, it harkens back to the days of college or camp, where individuals of similar age groups and persuasions live together and try to socialize their shared existence. It is a deeply human way to live, and one that will perhaps endure for many ages more. Whatever you may think about getting older, we hope that you will observe that maintaining freedom and independence for your loved ones is better than making them dependent on someone else, including you.