People over 70 feel marginalised ?
People over 70 can often be seen as preferring to stay at home anyway, or not be interested in outside activities, etc. This nowadays is not the profile of many "elderly" people. By inference, anyone under that age is "ok" - which can lead to feelings of immunity in younger people, which in turn CAN make them less willing to follow the protocols applying to everyone. NOTE: I do not say ALL younger people. We do realise that we are being asked to stay home for our own safety, but this is not balanced by some attitudes to older people.Added to the stress of being "elderly" - which many "elderly "do not relate to in terms of behaviour, fitness level, attitude to life, liveliness, interests and more - is the fact that many live ALONE. This is often not a choice, but just the way things have happened. There is no doubt that mental well being is adversely affected by being alone and fearful and at risk. it isn't true to say that the"elderly" are resigned to being quarantined: many feel imprisoned and are becoming more and more afraid to do anything outside the home because of the constant barrage of information and dire statistics about being "at risk". They become reluctant to go for a walk, talk to a neighbour over a wall(distancing of course). Many older people do not have a willing army of friends and family to do errands for them, and do not have technology to assist them in online shopping, so they are often obliged to go out themselves, using public transport and somehow struggle with weekly shopping. Sanitising every article bought, unsure of whether your house is clean enough, being afraid to answer the door, all add to the considerable stress felt. There are alternatives - eg associations and volunteer groups - but without Internet access or someone to assist, this can be overwhelming. It is not fair to assume that somehow life is over when you reach a certain age, and I think this is often implied in some articles or statements.
Why the contribution is important
I think my idea is important because I know from speaking to many people in the "elderly "group that they often feel a resentment at being so grounded. Mental health suffers appetite diminishes, sleep is disturbed.They often share a common view , that it is unfair to ask them - at a time when they should be enjoying remaining years -they are being asked to live the life of a recluse. So many are out every day, shopping, visiting people, maybe looking after grandchildren, helping someone else, taking part in clubs, sports activities, going on trips and holidays and more. They are not well off, just active.Mental health issues are not confined to the younger people, older folk keenly feel a sense of abandonment and despair, defeat. They also wonder if they do fall ill, how will they receive treatment . Yes, I do know that many older folk do not do such active things and are happy to stay home : they may have health issues that prevent full mobility, they may enjoy life alone at home. But many older people are of a generation that was independent and encouraged to do things for themselves, and they take it very hard that they are effectively "imprisoned." Not everyone has a lovely garden, lots of money, and resources that make isolation easier. Facebook pages and ads tend to show older people lovingly being attended by friends and family- albeit remotely. Facebook mainly shows families/partners/sharers coping with lockdown in a variety of ways that requires company, which so many older people do not have. This can also make the person watching it(if they have the technology) even more isolated and alone. How about showing the reality of some older folks' lives - eg an old person comes back from a walk to a small modest flat, the sole companion being a cat or a dog and a TV set. We are NOT in the same boat : we are in the same storm : our boats have different numbers of crew and that 's what makes the difference.
by StoryTeller on May 07, 2020 at 03:07PM