Elderly Parents

Study: More to Meal Delivery Than Food

John Moore/Getty Images Home visits like the one made by Meals on Wheels in September to Tamara Lycholaj, 89, of Sullivan County, N.Y., seem to help keep older people out of nursing homes, a new study shows. What’s a simpler idea than Meals on Wheels? Older, lower-income people who have trouble driving, cooking or shopping(…)

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Murray Span, 1922-2012

Suzanne DeChillo/The New York Times Paula Span with her father, Murray Span, in 2011. One consequence of our elders’ extended lifespans is that we half expect them to keep chugging along forever. My father, a busy yoga practitioner and blackjack player, celebrated his 90th birthday in September in reasonably good health. So when I had(…)

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In the Middle: Helping Unhappy Couples

Mike Blake/Reuters Sometimes couples just stop getting along. What’s a caregiver to do? A post on Monday discussed the forces that can make an older couple’s good marriage suddenly go bad — an array of subtle, and often-misunderstood, mental, physical and emotional factors that can upset the equilibrium of even the happiest marriages. Now we(…)

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In the Middle: Why Elderly Couples Fight

David Rochkind for The New York Times George and Gracie (let’s call them that because using their real names would make them even unhappier than they already appear to be) are in their 80s and have been married for more than 65 years. Until recently they seemed to ride the waves that are inevitable in(…)

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The Gift of Reading

Lucas Jackson/Reuters Libraries, like the New York Public Library, are working with older people to help them navigate tablets and computer software. This is the year of the tablet, David Pogue of The Times has told us, and that may be good news for seniors who open holiday wrappings to find one tucked inside. They(…)

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Patience, Consciousness and White Lies

Courtesy of Harley A. Rotbart, M.D. The author, far left, standing next to his mother, newly married son and daughter-in-law, and his in-laws. In the second row, from left, are the author’s wife and their younger adult children. My wife and I are blessed with having three “semi-independent” parents in their mid-80s living within a(…)

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WSJ: Time for Elder Care?

WSJ Article By KRISTEN GERENCHER Pay close attention to your aging parents on a holiday visit this year. Does the normally tidy house now seem neglected? Is there hoarding? Do you notice memory problems, confusion or physical unsteadiness? Discovering that a parent’s physical or mental health is declining can be heavy on the heart. It also(…)

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A Revolving Door to Avoid

Two weeks ago, Dr. Arif Nazir got a call from a colleague about a 79-year-old woman at an Indianapolis hospital. The cardiologist on the phone explained there was nothing more that could be done for this patient, who had advanced heart failure, chronic lung disease and diabetes. After a brief conversation, Dr. Nazir agreed to(…)

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Hard Decisions in the I.C.U.

Getty Images Your relative has spent five days in a hospital intensive care unit, unable to breathe without a ventilator and incapable of making her own medical decisions. Because she appointed you her health care proxy, or simply because you’re her closest relative, the choices about treatments — trying them or stopping them — fall(…)

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When Work Makes You Choose

4:50 p.m. | Updated Rachel Robinson was doing well at T-Mobile in Chattanooga, Tenn. The company hired her in 2006 as a customer service representative, promoted her twice in two years and honored her with an employee award that included a trip to Hawaii. The trouble began in early 2008, when her mother developed a(…)

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