This past Saturday, the Boston Globe ran a story about people falling in love in their senior years, and profiled a couple who met at Golda Meir House—one of our communities. So, at the risk of being labeled schizoid (referencing last week’s blog entry as well as this one), I had two reactions:
1.Hoorah! JCHE getting positive press; and in a story only a grinch would find uncharming; and
2.Really? The fact that people fall in love is news? Seriously, did one start with the idea that after age 70 people lose their basic human quality that favors engagement over isolation?
There’s something just a tad condescending about viewing seniors as somehow less likely to fall in love than any other age group. People at every age enjoy engaging with others—and romantic love is certainly one way we do that. What the story missed is that people simply need an opportunity to be with others and relationships will flower. Although “aging in place” is all the rage, if that means staying in a setting where you have to drive to be in community, the aging process limits your connections. If you can live in a JCHE building, community is as easy to access as walking down the hall.
But I don’t want to be a curmudgeon, so I will end this entry by celebrating all the ways people in our buildings blossom in their golden years—whether through new romance, new friendships or new pursuits (art, fitness, lectures, book groups, etc.)—and how grateful I am that the Globe chose to focus on something delightful!
Send me your thoughts and reactions. Warmly,