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Aging in literature and film

As I approach my fifties and confront the reality that parts of my body are wearing out and will never be young and resilient again, I turn to the arts for deeper philosophical understanding of this aspect of the human condition that I am facing. I'd like recommendations of fictional treatments of physical aging which are realistic but compassionate. Guidelines and caveats behind the fold. [more inside]
posted by matildaben on Aug 13, 2014 - 25 answers

Mother's Little Helper

YANMMD -- you are not my mother's doctor. But you probably can do a better job than her current one. Please help. [more inside]
posted by SockPuppetOfShame on Aug 4, 2014 - 18 answers

Is there any hope that she will see heart surgery as a wakeup call?

My spouse's mother, a senior citizen, just learned this year that she has heart failure. She survived multiple heart surgeries recently, a harrowing process during which she said she never wants to go through that again. Great! We assumed this meant that she was seeing this as a wakeup call to change her eating/exercise habits and stress levels so that she could get healthier. Several weeks later, it turns out that she is going back to all the old habits that helped contribute to heart disease in the first place. Is there any hope for her changing her deeply-ingrained habits? If so, what can my spouse do from afar to help support mom? If there isn't any hope for her adjusting her lifestyle, then how can we learn to accept her choices and still give her the support she needs? [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Jul 31, 2014 - 22 answers

Grief and the elderly

How do the elderly process loss? [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Jul 31, 2014 - 16 answers

Car insurance for someone who doesn't drive

My mother wants to give me her car so I can insure it for her - is this insurance fraud? [more inside]
posted by chocolatepeanutbuttercup on Jun 10, 2014 - 17 answers

Please help us get my mom into memory care!

Central Indiana - I need elder care help today! Please help us! [more inside]
posted by Thorzdad on May 31, 2014 - 106 answers

Book Recs for Nursing Home Book Club

I'm a social worker at a skilled nursing facility, and one of my residents has asked if we could start a book club. I'm trying to come up with a list of books that they can vote on to decide what we read first, and am looking for suggestions. [more inside]
posted by odayoday on May 15, 2014 - 16 answers

Moving your parent to a Senior Living Home

My friend is faced with moving her mother to a 'Senior Living Home'. (Connecticut) A lot of factors led to this; tests and professional advice, safety concerns, Mom's reluctant consent etc. Daughter understands all this, and will be relieved by her Mom's move to full-time care, but at the same time feels devastated taking this action. Abandonment, loss of memory and communication...... While other family members have visited the location and are happy with it, we will be visiting soon for the first time. 1. What should we consider? Where can a consumer look for possible violations or complaints? 2. I never had to face this. How can I support her?
posted by ebesan on Mar 18, 2014 - 9 answers

Simple CD player for elderly mother

Looking for recommendations for a very easy to use boombox-type CD player for my elderly mother. [more inside]
posted by soundslikeobiwan on Mar 17, 2014 - 6 answers

Concerned about an elderly neighbor

What should I do about/for my elderly, possibly senile neighbor? I am concerned for her safety. Special snowflake details inside. [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Mar 17, 2014 - 4 answers

How to Keep the Balance-Impaired Independent ... and Safe?

My parents, who are in their early 80's, both have spinal stenosis, which means both have mobility issues. It's a bum leg that affects balance in one case; in the other, periodic bouts of numbness in one or both legs. Both parents have done stints in physical therapy, both are lax about exercising regularly and, as of the day before yesterday, both have now fallen on the brick floor of the indoor sun porch. To date, there's been no real injury, and I want to keep it that way. At the very least, I want to ensure that the risk of harm is minimized and no heads are cracked. Difficulty level: a floor that floods (and mold), a large house, and exhaustingly stubborn parents. [more inside]
posted by Violet Blue on Mar 10, 2014 - 10 answers

Seeking journal article to state the obvious

It seems to be common knowledge that elderly people, or others who are subject to more falls, will sustain more fractures than the rest of the population, and will have increased morbidity as a result. What I am looking for is an authoritative journal article (abstract or title is fine), preferably from an orthopaedic publication, stating the above. [more inside]
posted by HoteDoge on Mar 7, 2014 - 6 answers

Aging Parent Filter: how do your folks get food and transportation?

People with aging parents (not newly retired, but also not ready for home care/retirement home): how are your parents getting food and transportation? [more inside]
posted by cranberryskies on Feb 28, 2014 - 21 answers

A hypothetical question about fall risk and Parkinsons

Does activity level during the day elevate the risk of a fall later in the day for a Parkinsons patient? [more inside]
posted by vincele on Feb 26, 2014 - 7 answers

Make a trip to see elderly relatives, even if she caused odd mini-drama?

Should we make plans to drive several hours and stay in a hotel, after flying across the country with our young kids (who'll be ages 6.5 and 4.5) next Spring, so that they can meet my husband's elderly relatives, with whom he has always had very good relationships... that is, until his octogenarian Grandmother said something to him over the phone that caused my husband to suddenly have a strong negative/ambivalent reaction to the whole idea? [more inside]
posted by hush on Dec 16, 2013 - 46 answers

Elderly mother's finances. Help.

I've written before about my elderly mom's dementia. This is less about her memory problems (and mine dealing with them) and more about a sticky financial situation she's in, thanks to my stepsister. You are not my lawyer, but legal advice would be welcome. Prepare for flurries, inside. [more inside]
posted by caryatid on Dec 6, 2013 - 6 answers

WebTV (AKA MSN TV) replacement? (with complications)

So, my parents (in their 80s), like many older folks, lost internet connection when Microsoft shut down the former WebTV service in September. It was a perfect solution for them and it seems nothing has emerged to satisfactorily replace it, but we have special problems since they can only get dial-up in their rural US location, and cellular coverage is spotty and complicated. Plus I'm on a different continent (and not so good at that end of computer literacy anyway – especially since things work a bit differently where I am). Still, I'd like to know what replacement solutions people have come up with among those of you who have dealt with a similar problem, especially if you can't be on hand to address ongoing problems that might pop up. [more inside]
posted by taz on Dec 5, 2013 - 9 answers

Tell me about your experience buying an iPad for an elderly person

My mom, who recently sold her home and moved into senior housing, has expressed interest in owning some sort of computing device. She's basically computer illiterate, has never been on the internet, and has trouble using my TV remote control sometimes. Am I crazy to even consider getting her an iPad? [more inside]
posted by bondcliff on Dec 2, 2013 - 35 answers

Help me find a big-button phone for my elderly father

My father has been using a plain old phone for decades. He's been somewhat visually impaired for a long time, but recently he started receiving an eye treatment in his one good eye that has reduced his vision even further. He also has low dexterity (though his mind's still totally sharp) due to a stroke earlier this year. He needs a new phone. Help! [more inside]
posted by limeonaire on Nov 21, 2013 - 7 answers

Warm clothes for an older lady

My mother is in assisted living, so she's inside much of the time, but has no control over the temperature of the building, and likes to walk outside when she can. She's asked me to find warm clothes for her to wear. I got her some fleece cardigans, but I'm having a hard time finding warm pants which are simple: pull on, no buttons or zippers. Difficulty level: petite, and not too expensive or fancy. She does have long johns, but simpler is probably better. Other suggestions of warming clothing are welcome, too.
posted by Riverine on Oct 20, 2013 - 23 answers

MP3 Player For Hospitalized Mum!

My 80 year old mum is in palliative care in the hospital. She is physically failing but mentally still 100%. I would like to get her an MP3 player to let her easily listen to music and audiobooks. Difficulty level: must be EASY TO USE, must have BIG BUTTONS, must have a BIG SCREEN, and must ideally not be so expensive that if it went walkies it would be a disaster. I have an iPod Nano I could give her, but the screen and controls are very small, and I think she might have trouble working it.
posted by biscotti on Oct 12, 2013 - 17 answers

How do childless people deal with the challenges of aging?

My partner and I have been thinking about aging recently, as various relatives reach the phase of their lives where they're moving into nursing homes and retirement facilities. Our examples are mostly of people with children, but as most of our friends reach middle age without children, we were wondering: in the US, where we don't have ingrained cultural obligations or socialist structure, how do people go through older age without kids to take care of them? If you're in that group, what are your plans for your old age? [more inside]
posted by linettasky on Oct 7, 2013 - 30 answers

Elderly parents filter: One healthy, one not so much

My in-laws cannot live 120 miles from us on their own any longer. This is true. My mother-in-law is relatively healthy and 73 with all her mental faculties. My father in law is physically very healthy and 83 with dementia. Where do they live together? Snow flurry inside. [more inside]
posted by Sophie1 on Sep 11, 2013 - 6 answers

Finding physiotherapy for the elderly in Paris, France?

I have an ageing relative who lives in Paris, France. He is highly functional and cognitively intact, but he has lost a lost of muscle mass in his legs and has fallen twice in the last year. How can I find a physiotherapist for the elderly in Paris? More beneath the fold. [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Aug 29, 2013 - 3 answers

Computer advice for elderly

I need to purchase and configure a computer for my 95-year old grandmother so she can make Skype calls to her grandchildren and great-grandchildren. She lives in another state, so hands on assistance is not possible. My 70-year old mother is going to set things up for me; I just need to get the hardware and configure the software. [more inside]
posted by medarby on Aug 27, 2013 - 34 answers

Where can I buy a couch & chair for my elderly dad with bad knees?

Hi hivemind. I'm in Northern California and stumped. I decked out my lovely, elderly parents' place, but foolishly bought stylish soft couches/chairs with no arm rests. I now need firm couches and sturdy chairs before either of them has a fall because of balance/knee issues. But when I google, I often find articles about how important the right furniture is, but one one site that offers a selection of furniture options for seniors. Or I find sites that seem to sell such furniture in bulk, to senior living facilities (and often don't list prices without starting a business account). I'm wondering if I'm just looking in the wrong place, and if so, where should I look? Or, have you bought great furniture for someone with limited mobility? Where did you look? What do you like? Thanks!
posted by anitanita on Aug 23, 2013 - 6 answers

Recovery expectations from angiogram for 70-year-old?

My mom is in great health and decent shape for a 70-year-old and just completed 3 weeks of travel where she showed great endurance. Then she came back and "flunked" a stress-test :( [more inside]
posted by Anwan on Aug 2, 2013 - 11 answers

Stair walker?

My 90 year old grandmother lives by herself in a house in which she needs to use stairs, but it's getting harder and harder these days. I know about electric lifts, but I recall a news story about a year or two ago in which a British teenage girl made a simple but brilliant invention: a track is posted on the wall above the stairs, and a large handle swings out perpendicular, and you grab onto the post/handle and pull yourself up or down the stairs. What is this invention and where can I get one online? Googling is hard because I can't think of what you'd call this...stair walker?
posted by zardoz on Jul 16, 2013 - 3 answers

How can I get my aging father to stop eating like a picky child?

My dad is around 70 years old and has subsisted on a steady diet of shortbread cookies (those ones in the yellow box from the convenience store) and vanilla Ensure drinks for the past 2-3 years. How can we help him to help himself and eat real, nourishing food? [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Mar 8, 2013 - 33 answers

Advice re: my father's swift decrease in mobility - arthritis & Synvisc

My father (age 79) has gone from keeping a cane in the car for occasional use to steady himself (through 2012) to being in terrible pain and needing a walker around the house (the latter after a Synvisc injection to the knee 2 weeks ago, knee swelling, and falling - again - at home alone). So far he hasn't broken anything in his falls, but I live 90 minutes away from him and he lives alone. He's accustomed to being quite active and has often been mistaken for a man 10-15 years his junior. [more inside]
posted by pammeke on Mar 4, 2013 - 10 answers

Help me find a non-sucky but affordable nursing home in NYC for my dad.

My dad is 78 and his body is breaking down due to a long bout with Parkinson's. He's been in a rehab facility for the last month and his time to stay there (that is covered by Medicare) is running out. He wants to go home, but he will need 24 hour care and I'm not sure that's a feasible option for many reasons I'd rather not go into (not the least of which is that "home" is a 4000 square foot loft with plenty of places to fall, which is a real danger with Parkinsons patients) He and I are not (nor have we ever been) particularly close, and I do not live in the area anymore, nor am I particularly inclined to go care for him myself (not that I would have the expertise anyway). I do want him to be somewhere that he can be cared for and comfortable, though. [more inside]
posted by softlord on Feb 12, 2013 - 6 answers

Help, I've fallen, and I can't share my geocoordinates!

I'm in search of a personal medical alert product for my middle-aged mother and somewhat overwhelmed by the volume of incomplete solutions, vague descriptions, sketchy resellers, and keyword hoarding. Help me be the best geriatric technologist this side of sixty! [more inside]
posted by nominal on Jan 22, 2013 - 11 answers

Mumbuntu.

Ubuntu for the elderly? [more inside]
posted by turgid dahlia 2 on Jan 4, 2013 - 10 answers

My mom has pneumonia - desperately seeking advice

My 90-year old, very hardy but recently frail, mother now has pneumonia. Has anyone been through this, or something similar? Do you have any advice to offer about the whole thing - what to watch out for in her, what to say or do for her, how to deal with the hospital staff, how to handle my own emotional ups and downs as well as those of my sisters? [more inside]
posted by DrGail on Dec 29, 2012 - 10 answers

Help me choose a no-contract dumbphone for my mom.

Looking for prepaid phone recommendations for an older person in the US. No smartphone, no texting, just very occasional outgoing voice calls. [more inside]
posted by Ookseer on Dec 12, 2012 - 11 answers

Need to find someone in NYC to help look after my Parkinsons-having dad.

I'll try to stick to specifically relevant snowflake stuff here. So, my father is 78 and has Parkinson's, which is compounded by long-standing blood pressure issues that leaves him prone to falling unexpectedly (moreso than a typical Parkinsons patient). He lives in a big loft in the East Village (NYC) that he's lived in for forty years, and has no designs on leaving. [more inside]
posted by softlord on Nov 12, 2012 - 10 answers

Oxygen for Rental for Father

My 72 year old dad just was prescribed oxygen. He has portable units and then an electric machine for home use. He is supposed to fly from Dallas to Phoenix to visit me for Thanksgiving. I saw the Southwest regulations for his portable, but should I rent him a home machine or can he check his? Are they heavy? Are they expensive to rent?
posted by bkf on Nov 10, 2012 - 6 answers

Adventure games for the elderly.

Need recommendations on adventure games for elderly people. [more inside]
posted by Beholder on Nov 6, 2012 - 13 answers

Happily he's the second time come to them

Historically, what were stereotypical views of the elderly? [more inside]
posted by Talkie Toaster on Oct 23, 2012 - 5 answers

Elderly / Power of Attorney Abuse

What can I do to protect my elderly mom from my abusive and greedy sister? [more inside]
posted by iNurtureTheOdd on Oct 23, 2012 - 25 answers

Sadfilter: Helping an elderly parent/grandparent realize they can never go home.

Strategies for helping an elderly parent, who is living in assisted living, realize/come to terms with the fact that moving home will never be an option and it is now time to sell that home? [more inside]
posted by lovableiago on Oct 11, 2012 - 21 answers

Good cell phone for a senior citizen?

Best simple cell phone for a senior citizen? [more inside]
posted by middleclasstool on Sep 28, 2012 - 8 answers

What to do about a freeloading brother and an enabling mother?

What to do about a mentally unstable brother who's taking advantage of my elderly mother? [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Aug 27, 2012 - 8 answers

Is there a good substitute for family connection?

How can I help my grandma feel less lonely? She has dementia and alzheimers, but it still pretty together most of the time. She should be surrounded by family, but isn't- we are all so spread apart. . . [more inside]
posted by abirdinthehand on Aug 25, 2012 - 13 answers

Help me show my mother-in-law that the iPad "just works"

My 70+ year old mother-in-law just bought herself an iPad. Great! Except that she has LITERALLY never used a computer in her life. How should I approach teaching her how to use it? [more inside]
posted by photovox on Aug 21, 2012 - 32 answers

Computing for a 90-year-old?

Computing for a 90-year-old? Gramps might finally be interested in the wonderful world of the Internet. [more inside]
posted by notsnot on Aug 7, 2012 - 17 answers

Lung Cancer - What now?

80 years old, lost 40 pounds since May, no appetite, weakening, diagnosed with lung cancer today. What can we expect now? [more inside]
posted by soulbarn on Jul 17, 2012 - 30 answers

Please help me get a flight quickly & cheaply!

Please help me get a flight quickly & cheaply! This may have been answered in a previous question - if so, please point me in the right direction, but I need input quickly. [more inside]
posted by kbar1 on Jun 28, 2012 - 17 answers

Better care for Grandma

Please tell me about your in-home elder care solutions in the US, specifically in the rural Northeast/upper Midwest. [more inside]
posted by Snarl Furillo on May 15, 2012 - 10 answers

When I'm 64?

What happens to elderly people in the United States who have run out of retirement savings, can't work, and aren't getting enough from Social Security to cover their living expenses? [more inside]
posted by El Sabor Asiatico on Apr 3, 2012 - 22 answers

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