Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Non-investing personal finance issues including insurance, credit, real estate, taxes, employment and legal issues such as trusts and wills
pastafarian
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Post by pastafarian » Wed Nov 18, 2009 5:35 pm

epilnk wrote:"People without children" is always safe. If you're worried about offending, work around it.

Over the years my wife and I have been DINKs, TINKs, FINKs. Now we're OINKs :lol: (but she's putting in a whole bunch of volunteer hours every week!)

Faith20879
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Post by Faith20879 » Thu Nov 19, 2009 11:15 am

Christine_NM,

Thank you for the detailed answer. It helps a lot. I like your three-legged system - the eldercare firm, the accountant, and the estate attorney and it is a very doable one. We'll try to think along that same line. Like you said, life is unpredictable and we can only plan ahead so much.

Regards,
Faith

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BigFoot48
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by BigFoot48 » Fri Oct 06, 2017 2:34 pm

I'm reviving this old thread because it's one of the best on this topic, although there has been a number of similar discussions over the years. My DW and I have been discussing this of late and trying to develop a strategy. The need for this came into sharp focus this week with this horror-story article on what happened to a few hundred not-so-old people in Nevada in recent years. https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2017 ... eir-rights

For those who posted here, are there any updates on the actions you have taken in the last 8 years?
Retired | Two-time in top-10 in Bogleheads S&P500 contest; 12-time loser

aristotelian
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by aristotelian » Fri Oct 06, 2017 2:41 pm

OP,
Do you have any beneficiaries? Named executor for your will?


Edit: I see this is a bump of an old thread.

I would think even if not a blood relation, someone who cares about you (niece, nephew, friend) would at least help with the financial aspects, and of course if they stand to benefit from your estate they will seek to take good care of it. If it is someone you trust, you could even offer compensation.

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MrDogg
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Re:

Post by MrDogg » Sat Oct 07, 2017 8:56 am

Patchy Groundfog wrote:
Sun Nov 15, 2009 7:34 am
Several people I know who are 10-15 years older than me have moved into a continuing care community in our city.
One option my wife and I are considering is a Continuing Care Retirement Community (CCRC). These campus complexes with onsite restaurants, beauty salons, gyms, and game rooms have three stages: 1. Independent Living (you have your own villa or apartment) 2. Assisted Living (still in your villa or apartment but help with medical/general living issues) 3. Final Care (you move into an onsite hospital like facility with constant medical care for the duration).

We have checked out a few and are impressed with the quality. We also know a few people who are living in CCRCs. They are very expensive due too the final care insurance aspect of the plan. I think statistics show that about 30% of the residents end up in final care and for them the average stay is 18 months. My wife is sold on the concept, me not so much as yet. Seems like a good alternative for those without close trusted family help.

khaleesi1
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by khaleesi1 » Sat Oct 07, 2017 8:56 am

This is one sad thread. I'm going to put more effort into dating ASAP.

staythecourse
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by staythecourse » Sat Oct 07, 2017 9:21 am

Excellent topic for conversation. I have 2 kids so not worried as at least one will like us enough to help out. The issue is my wife and my siblings. We have 3 total and all 3 are single and older then us. Only one is that close with our kids. So don't think I will expect our kids to help at all taking care of them since they are not even involved in their lives.

I can say as a physician it is a BIG deal. It isn't just about caring for oneself if not able to do it by oneself. My sister has had a few medical procedures done requiring sedation and had to have my father drive her home and stay with her for a day. What is she going to do for even for simple things like this when he passes away? That definitely worries me. My wife and I have discussed the issue and are a bit worried about them already and they are just around 40 and relatively healthy.

Looking forward to hearing some ideas.

Good luck.
"The stock market [fluctuation], therefore, is noise. A giant distraction from the business of investing.” | -Jack Bogle

staythecourse
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Re:

Post by staythecourse » Sat Oct 07, 2017 9:27 am

Christine_NM wrote:
Sun Nov 15, 2009 11:18 am
auntie -

Same situation. I "hired" a social worker who runs an eldercare management firm to be my healthcare power of attorney a few years ago. The firm is named in my will. Also, if I'm not dead but just somewhat incapacitated hopefully I will be able to gasp out the firm's name or show their business card or have it where EMT's will find it before I lapse into unconsciousness. They take over according to directives I've previously written.

You can't buy caring, but you can buy professionalism, which in some situations may be preferable. I used to work in ICU units, and families make terrible spur-of-the-moment end-of-life decisions about prolonging care, not that there is much to decide by that time. Nature takes its course.

When I made this arrangement the social worker said she had had only one previous client make the same deal. Now there must be more, because instead of insisting on contacting me every six months to find out if I'm still doing OK, this is an optional service for Healthcare Power of Attorney clients.

In 15-20 years I might ready for a senior apartment, like you. Right now I enjoy a small, newish, easy to maintain house across the street from Trader Joe's and Bed Bath and Beyond and other neat stores. There's a new senior rental apartment complex a couple of blocks away. Options for senior living will wax and wane according to Medicare policies. So we all will have to see what's available when we're ready.

Interesting to name the same company in your will AND power of attorney. Aren't you worried about conflict of interest?

Do you have a primary care physician you have have a good relationship with? Is that even legal? I'm a doc. and don't even know if one could do that. I would think the person who knows your health the best AND knows medicine AND is at arms length emotionally would be a good choice.

Good luck.
"The stock market [fluctuation], therefore, is noise. A giant distraction from the business of investing.” | -Jack Bogle

mptfan
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Re:

Post by mptfan » Sat Oct 07, 2017 10:55 am

tim1999 wrote:
Sat Nov 14, 2009 9:57 pm
I also agree that you can't hire someone to take care of you.
Actually you can. Auntie said "You can't hire someone to care about you." That's different.
I eat risk for breakfast. :)

retire57
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Re:

Post by retire57 » Sat Oct 07, 2017 11:01 am

Deleted.

investing1012
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by investing1012 » Sat Oct 07, 2017 12:27 pm

auntie wrote:
Sat Nov 14, 2009 9:47 pm
The older I get the more I worry.

My parents are in their 90s and still in good health but I see the time coming soon when my brother and I will have to spend a lot of effort caring for them. Not financially, but looking out for their interests when they can't. We don't want them abused or taken advantage of.

So in 20 or 30 years I'll be old and in need of someone who really cares about me to look after my interests. My brother is older than I am, and probably won't be available for me. I don't have any cousins that are younger and care about me.

You can't hire someone to care about you.

Anybody have a solution?
well if you start now you can have a child in 30 years to take care of you :P

BuyAndHoldOn
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Re: Re:

Post by BuyAndHoldOn » Sat Oct 07, 2017 1:09 pm

mptfan wrote:
Sat Oct 07, 2017 10:55 am
tim1999 wrote:
Sat Nov 14, 2009 9:57 pm
I also agree that you can't hire someone to take care of you.
Actually you can. Auntie said "You can't hire someone to care about you." That's different.

At some point: Either you can take care of yourself [with or without someone's help], or you can't.

Plan accordingly. Be useful and [God willing] healthy for as long as you can be, including being self reliant. And set up your assets to go where you want them to.

Rupert
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by Rupert » Sat Oct 07, 2017 1:19 pm

Many people join churches to address needs such as this. Others I have known have moved in with a close friend or friends late in life. In the past, our extended families would have pitched in. The rule in my family growing up was that you never let a relative spend even a minute alone in a hospital. Now that extended family is scattered in the wind, which I think is typical today.

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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by littlebird » Sat Oct 07, 2017 1:30 pm

staythecourse wrote:
Sat Oct 07, 2017 9:21 am
I can say as a physician it is a BIG deal. It isn't just about caring for oneself if not able to do it by oneself. My sister has had a few medical procedures done requiring sedation and had to have my father drive her home and stay with her for a day. What is she going to do for even for simple things like this when he passes away? That definitely worries me. My wife and I have discussed the issue and are a bit worried about them already and they are just around 40 and relatively healthy.
Looking forward to hearing some ideas.Good luck.
Where I live, in an "active adult community" we hire home health aides to take us, wait for us (many day clinics require that someone be there waiting for you) and bring us home, perhaps staying for a few hours, from these procedures. Sometime they need to do the same for us the nest day for a post-op visit.

DrGoogle2017
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by DrGoogle2017 » Sat Oct 07, 2017 1:31 pm

I have two siblings who are not married. One is a doctor and has a girl friend in the healthcare profession. Hopefully his girl friend will help him. My other sibling, I have suggested for her to move closer to me and she did. My husband and I are helping her taking care of her yard. If I have the health when my sister needs help, I don’t mind helping, since I’m younger and healthier. But if not then who knows and who cares as in I do my best, not going to worry. I have two kids and I know one will help, it’s in her nature. The other one has said she will send money. I hope she does well. My husband and I are waiting for the ocean front house and a nice vineyard from her. Even though we don’t drink wine anymore.

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auntie
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by auntie » Sat Oct 07, 2017 4:27 pm

OP here.

It's 8 years later. My parents were in their 90s and in good health. Now my mom's been gone 4 years and dad's in a good assisted living facility. He's 102.

I'm doing a lot for him, managing his finances, taking him places, making decisions he's no longer competent to make. I sold his home last year. I spend quite a bit of time with him and arrange for old friends to visit him.

That's the sort of thing I still worry about for myself. I have enough money to pay for care as long as I might need it, but still have nobody who really cares enough about me to watch over me when I'm not interesting anymore.

What would my dad do if he didn't have me or my brother? I don't know. My youngest friend is only 6 years younger than me. And her family aren't as long lived as mine.

Financially, I'm arranging to have a lifetime income. That's not the problem. When my friends see that I'm safely put away in a nursing home they may visit occasionally, but they won't notice if I'm being taken advantage of. So I still have the same worries I had.
High risk does not equal high reward. It equals high risk of no reward.

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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by aristotelian » Sat Oct 07, 2017 5:57 pm

auntie wrote:
Sat Oct 07, 2017 4:27 pm
OP here.

It's 8 years later. My parents were in their 90s and in good health. Now my mom's been gone 4 years and dad's in a good assisted living facility. He's 102.

I'm doing a lot for him, managing his finances, taking him places, making decisions he's no longer competent to make. I sold his home last year. I spend quite a bit of time with him and arrange for old friends to visit him.

That's the sort of thing I still worry about for myself. I have enough money to pay for care as long as I might need it, but still have nobody who really cares enough about me to watch over me when I'm not interesting anymore.

What would my dad do if he didn't have me or my brother? I don't know. My youngest friend is only 6 years younger than me. And her family aren't as long lived as mine.

Financially, I'm arranging to have a lifetime income. That's not the problem. When my friends see that I'm safely put away in a nursing home they may visit occasionally, but they won't notice if I'm being taken advantage of. So I still have the same worries I had.
OP, who are the executor and beneficiaries of your will?

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auntie
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by auntie » Sat Oct 07, 2017 7:01 pm

aristotelian wrote:
Sat Oct 07, 2017 5:57 pm
auntie wrote:
Sat Oct 07, 2017 4:27 pm
OP here.

It's 8 years later. My parents were in their 90s and in good health. Now my mom's been gone 4 years and dad's in a good assisted living facility. He's 102.

I'm doing a lot for him, managing his finances, taking him places, making decisions he's no longer competent to make. I sold his home last year. I spend quite a bit of time with him and arrange for old friends to visit him.

That's the sort of thing I still worry about for myself. I have enough money to pay for care as long as I might need it, but still have nobody who really cares enough about me to watch over me when I'm not interesting anymore.

What would my dad do if he didn't have me or my brother? I don't know. My youngest friend is only 6 years younger than me. And her family aren't as long lived as mine.

Financially, I'm arranging to have a lifetime income. That's not the problem. When my friends see that I'm safely put away in a nursing home they may visit occasionally, but they won't notice if I'm being taken advantage of. So I still have the same worries I had.
OP, who are the executor and beneficiaries of your will?
As part of our divorce agreement we decided to leave everything to each other.
High risk does not equal high reward. It equals high risk of no reward.

aristotelian
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by aristotelian » Sat Oct 07, 2017 7:23 pm

auntie wrote:
Sat Oct 07, 2017 7:01 pm
As part of our divorce agreement we decided to leave everything to each other.
That is interesting. Any chance he is facing the same problem and you would each agree to help manage the other's affairs if needed?

If he dies first, who would be next in line?

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auntie
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by auntie » Sat Oct 07, 2017 7:32 pm

aristotelian wrote:
Sat Oct 07, 2017 7:23 pm
auntie wrote:
Sat Oct 07, 2017 7:01 pm
As part of our divorce agreement we decided to leave everything to each other.
That is interesting. Any chance he is facing the same problem and you would each agree to help manage the other's affairs if needed?

If he dies first, who would be next in line?
If he dies first there's nobody in line. I'll worry about that when the time comes. If I die first it won't make any difference to me what happens to his stuff.

He will certainly manage my affairs if I need it and he's able, but he's older and male, so more likely he'll need help before I do. He has younger siblings and nieces and nephews so he doesn't have the same problems I have.

If he needs managing I'll start doing it but most likely I'd pass it off to his relatives in time.
High risk does not equal high reward. It equals high risk of no reward.

Jtf6
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by Jtf6 » Sun Oct 08, 2017 10:28 am

I'd rather my parents spend their final years with me, rather than a community. When my dad was really sick, we were all at his bed in the hospital. That is something I would love for myself.

I need to hurry up, and make some children.

montanagirl
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by montanagirl » Sun Oct 08, 2017 2:45 pm

I am in the same position as the OP, assuming I outlive dh and it looks like I will.

What worries me most is that various and sundry caregivers will notice that there is nobody visiting, and take advantage of the situation.

Guess I'll need some imaginary friends, who will show up any day now.. : :happy

2015
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by 2015 » Mon Oct 09, 2017 9:13 am

I am without children or what might be referred to as a traditional relationship and at this time in my life I want neither. My recent exceptional trip to Mexico would not have been as exceptional had I not been able to take that trip alone. Having never been bored in my life, I do not worry about boredom, and loneliness is something I've never experienced.

I have several role models for being single and aging successfully and plan to follow in their footsteps. Personally, a sibling is set up as estate executor (currently, circumstances could change), but if I didn't, I would hire a firm. Financially, I would/will probably transfer cognitive decline risk to annuities. Regarding care, some elder role models I know have hired individuals who provide excellent custodial care and who, contrary to above posts, do indeed care about them. A neighbor recently died alone but had a another younger neighbor facilitate the transition for him. I also would gladly have helped had I known at the time. Other role models, like the posts above, have a network of individuals who are not family but function as friends mutually relying upon each other. I am already transitioning into this stage of my life as I provide support to single friends of mine.

Physically, I am not worried about physical decline as I have no intention of spending so much as a day in a nursing home. Having experienced exceptional health the majority of my life, I do not consider such stays "living" (YMMV). All health calculators project my lifespan should extend to approximately age 95, and I have no intention of living past that age. Having almost died in my early 40's, like a poster above, I bought the book Final Exit at that time and came close ending life on my own terms. Should I get a serious health condition in the future, such as cancer, heart or some other serious disease, I don't want "the best care" in order to cling to life because I've been to that party before and I know how it turns out (it's not a good one).

Regarding health, I have set up and am following a detailed plan to optimize healthspan (versus lifespan) as it relates to the “Go-Go”, “Slow-Go”, and “No-Go” year patterns of aging . This regimen encompasses optimizing health, vitality, and energy through ongoing, conscious attention to health, diet, exercise, and safety. As such, my intention is to experience only Go-Go years until sometime in my late 80’s, then Slow-Go years until approximately age 94 where I “slow down”, with perhaps a No-Go final year of 95 in which to “wind down” and prepare for life’s exit (of course, none of this is exact, but it's the basic plan anyway). Studies have shown this is the experience of high performing athletes and as I have been weightlifting since I was 21 years old with attention to diet since my mid-20's, my intention is to mimic that experience.

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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by Saltine » Mon Oct 09, 2017 9:57 am

Have a question... (BTW Hi I'm new!)

For those who have set up or are exploring 3rd party professional type overseers (for lack of a better term). How did you find credible people to work with?

Background, Husband and I are in our mid 40s, no kids and not sure if we have family we can count on as we get older. So this topic is the one that keeps me up at night. We're doing pretty good on retirement savings so I'm confident we'll have means. But I worry about the non-financial support side of things as we age. I have a hunch we'll see more services available either through social programs or paid services before we get to the point where we will need them. But if need be, I'd like to start thinking about and planning for things now before I need them.


Honestly the article posted from the New Yorker is straight out of my nightmares. I don't ever want to be in a position like that.

2015
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by 2015 » Tue Oct 10, 2017 11:01 am

Saltine wrote:
Mon Oct 09, 2017 9:57 am
Have a question... (BTW Hi I'm new!)

For those who have set up or are exploring 3rd party professional type overseers (for lack of a better term). How did you find credible people to work with?

Background, Husband and I are in our mid 40s, no kids and not sure if we have family we can count on as we get older. So this topic is the one that keeps me up at night. We're doing pretty good on retirement savings so I'm confident we'll have means. But I worry about the non-financial support side of things as we age. I have a hunch we'll see more services available either through social programs or paid services before we get to the point where we will need them. But if need be, I'd like to start thinking about and planning for things now before I need them.


Honestly the article posted from the New Yorker is straight out of my nightmares. I don't ever want to be in a position like that.
One single person I know, 83 1/2, had a housekeeper, who later also transitioned to a person who provides all types of custodial care, including help with bathing. She's told me she trusts the housekeeper/caregiver, who in fact charges less than a home health care aide, much more than she would trust any stranger coming from an agency.

Another role model who is a neighbor, and who I was shocked to learn this week is 87 (but who all this time I thought was in her early 70's!! because she looks/acts like it), does the same thing. She has no family but uses a housekeeper/caregiver who she has known, and also has a network of friends who check up on her. Yet another role model friend in the gym is 85 but looks/acts like he's maybe 70, and has a network of friends that he provides care and help to.

Since around 30, I've made it a point to accumulate role models of people somewhat older than me who were effective at navigating aging. As a result, I have too many examples of successful aging to look at it as a time of loss. I jokingly told my mid-80's father and step-mother this week I had to confess to having a new discriminatory prejudice: I don't hang out with anyone under the age of 55, and if I'm feeling generous, the cut-off is 50. I'm kidding of course, and maybe it's living in Los Angeles, but it's been my experience people in the U.S. generally don't start maturing until they reach around 50. I just love talking to people older than me because they don't come with all the attendant baggage that people my age and younger still have.

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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by buccimane » Tue Oct 10, 2017 12:01 pm

khaleesi1 wrote:
Sat Oct 07, 2017 8:56 am
This is one sad thread. I'm going to put more effort into dating ASAP.
My sentiments exactly :shock:
A man convinced against his will is of the same opinion still

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Re:

Post by Dottie57 » Tue Oct 10, 2017 12:20 pm

auntie wrote:
Sun Nov 15, 2009 10:21 am
I was hoping someone would have already set up something like what I've been thinking about so I wouldn't have to reinvent the wheel, but no one has mentioned it yet, so it probably hasn't happened.

I'm thinking about starting a group of local people in similar situations, having it primarily a social group but with the understanding that we are to act as family when one of us needs help.

I don't know how hard it would be to set up. It would have to be a small enough group that everyone would know everyone else, yet large enough that there would be enough people with the correct time and talents.

I'm not thinking about long-term care, just watching over the people hired to do the jobs needed, and someone to deal with the sudden emergencies that may come up.

I'll probably be moving to a senior community in the next 5-10 years and there should be enough prospects there. If anyone had already done something like that I'd sure like to hear about it and learn from their experiences.

*edit*
While I was typing tetractys mentioned what I was thinking about. Any idea how to find out about such a thing?

I have friends whoare in same situation (as am I). And we have half jokingly talked f living together. Or buying in the condo communityso we can keep track of each other.

stimulacra
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by stimulacra » Tue Oct 10, 2017 12:42 pm

Saw this article on The New Yorker about professional guardians who systemically strip the elderly of their civil rights and assets.

How the Elderly Lose Their Rights
Guardians can sell the assets and control the lives of senior citizens without their consent—and reap a profit from it.
http://bit.ly/2xs64pT

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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by BigFoot48 » Tue Oct 10, 2017 1:26 pm

stimulacra wrote:
Tue Oct 10, 2017 12:42 pm
Saw this article on The New Yorker about professional guardians who systemically strip the elderly of their civil rights and assets.
That is the article that lead me to revive this thread. I sent it to all my aging friends and it certainly got their attention!
Retired | Two-time in top-10 in Bogleheads S&P500 contest; 12-time loser

CRTR
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by CRTR » Tue Oct 10, 2017 2:13 pm

stimulacra wrote:
Tue Oct 10, 2017 12:42 pm
Saw this article on The New Yorker about professional guardians who systemically strip the elderly of their civil rights and assets.

How the Elderly Lose Their Rights
Guardians can sell the assets and control the lives of senior citizens without their consent—and reap a profit from it.
http://bit.ly/2xs64pT
So true and so sad and FRUSTRATING!! The elderly have a big bulls eye on their backs. My Mom is in a Continuing Care Community in Southern California. I've seen all sorts of exploitation over the years . . .from family, friends, professional guardians, etc. In my opinion, the facility itself is guilty as well. For 10 years, they've raised their independent living charge 4%/year. Every year, it's a different excuse (minimum wage, utility costs, health insurance, workman's comp, etc). It's a smart business model because people that age and physical state don't want to move and you don't "notice" a 4% increase readily. I met a gal who did some work for parent company a couple years ago. The private equity group that owns the Community is making $$ hand over fist. In fact, the returns are so good, they're looking to expand. On the other hand, they do take good care of my Mom but the price gouging still gets on my nerves.

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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by stimulacra » Tue Oct 10, 2017 2:28 pm

BigFoot48 wrote:
Tue Oct 10, 2017 1:26 pm
stimulacra wrote:
Tue Oct 10, 2017 12:42 pm
Saw this article on The New Yorker about professional guardians who systemically strip the elderly of their civil rights and assets.
That is the article that lead me to revive this thread. I sent it to all my aging friends and it certainly got their attention!
Sorry my bad. Yeah I read it and it gave me pause… 

On the plus side, I'm hoping it will encourage families to discuss end-of-life care and asset planning across generations as well as encourage empathy. Courts don't care… these professional guardians have essentially figured out a new way to acquire wealth.

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telemark
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by telemark » Tue Oct 10, 2017 3:33 pm

staythecourse wrote:
Sat Oct 07, 2017 9:21 am
Excellent topic for conversation. I have 2 kids so not worried as at least one will like us enough to help out. The issue is my wife and my siblings. We have 3 total and all 3 are single and older then us. Only one is that close with our kids. So don't think I will expect our kids to help at all taking care of them since they are not even involved in their lives.

I can say as a physician it is a BIG deal. It isn't just about caring for oneself if not able to do it by oneself. My sister has had a few medical procedures done requiring sedation and had to have my father drive her home and stay with her for a day. What is she going to do for even for simple things like this when he passes away? That definitely worries me. My wife and I have discussed the issue and are a bit worried about them already and they are just around 40 and relatively healthy.

Looking forward to hearing some ideas.

Good luck.
Staying overnight is usually an option, obviously a more expensive one. I have also lied successfully, but I don't want to go into details in a public forum and it's a bad idea anyway.

A much better idea is to belong to some sort of community outside of your family. I'm my mother's nearest relative and I live a full day's drive away, so she relies a lot on volunteers from her church and friends in her assisted living center. I'm enormously grateful to these people and will probably never be able to repay them properly. As long as you possibly can, get out, meet people, volunteer for something. It's better than sitting at home watching TV.

Dave bricoleur
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by Dave bricoleur » Tue Oct 10, 2017 8:52 pm

and re: suicide when feeble

It might be possible to set up an email deadman switch so that after some number of unanswered emails it funds "Dial-a-Hitman" and a professional comes out to finish me off when I'm face down in the mashed potatoes.

Hopefully the hitman looks first to make sure it's not an unplugged modem or overly active spam filter...

-dave

runner540
Posts: 399
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by runner540 » Tue Oct 10, 2017 9:33 pm

CRTR wrote:
Tue Oct 10, 2017 2:13 pm
stimulacra wrote:
Tue Oct 10, 2017 12:42 pm
Saw this article on The New Yorker about professional guardians who systemically strip the elderly of their civil rights and assets.

How the Elderly Lose Their Rights
Guardians can sell the assets and control the lives of senior citizens without their consent—and reap a profit from it.
http://bit.ly/2xs64pT
So true and so sad and FRUSTRATING!! The elderly have a big bulls eye on their backs. My Mom is in a Continuing Care Community in Southern California. I've seen all sorts of exploitation over the years . . .from family, friends, professional guardians, etc. In my opinion, the facility itself is guilty as well. For 10 years, they've raised their independent living charge 4%/year. Every year, it's a different excuse (minimum wage, utility costs, health insurance, workman's comp, etc). It's a smart business model because people that age and physical state don't want to move and you don't "notice" a 4% increase readily. I met a gal who did some work for parent company a couple years ago. The private equity group that owns the Community is making $$ hand over fist. In fact, the returns are so good, they're looking to expand. On the other hand, they do take good care of my Mom but the price gouging still gets on my nerves.
Can you expand on why you perceive 4% a year a price gouging? That seems like a reasonable increase, considering the rate at which healthcare costs are increasing, plus the other factors you mention such as wages. However, I have not looked in this issue before. It wouldn't be fair to expect no price increases, and would probably lead to deteriorating care, high staff turnover if there were no raises, rationing of A/C, etc.

CRTR
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by CRTR » Wed Oct 11, 2017 2:07 pm

I sure can. Happy to give you some reasons why I believe this to be the case.

1. During this same time interval, I managed 4 surgery centers in the same part of California. It follows that I'm familiar with employee and facility costs. During this same time interval, our overhead exceeded 3% in only one year! In fact, in 2009, our overall costs went down (employee health insurance up only 5% that year). SDGE charges went down in 2009. We were able to reduce our debt costs markedly at the same time due to interest rate changes. Add to this fact that I dated one of the nursing staff for three years, which gave me a little inside info. My nurse friend did not receive a COLA to her salary in 2009, 2010. She was told the reason was to limit fee increases to residents. So, their stated reason for needing the 4% increase did not jibe with the facts, as I knew them. If you consider that none of these seniors were getting cost of living increases in their pensions and social security at the same, the price increases seemed particularly insensitive . . . . so, to summarize, fee increases attributed to increased overhead and employee related costs didn't fit the facts, as I knew them.

2. This particular operation is a for-profit entity. I learned from my friend that did some consulting work for them, share distributions were running ~20+% per year. So, in the setting of the above, owners maintained a ~20%/year yield.

3. An independent living, 2 bedroom "cottage" in 2008 cost my parents $5100/month. (included utilities but nothing else). FMV for the same size, small 2 bedroom house, same neighborhood, at the time was~$1800/month (I know because I looked). Figure ~$150/month for utilities at the time. $1950 vs $5100 . . . .

4. Finally, doesn't it seem a bit odd that, by coincidence, their cost increased by EXACTLY 4%, every year?

Look, I was an owner/admin of some surgery centers and we were a for-profit operation. I understand these guys are running a business too and need to make money. My parents (only Mom now) have enough assets and can afford it so, for me personally, it's not such a big deal. On the other hand, some of the other residents have been victimized by it. One, in particular, I know did not understand the full financial impact annual 4% increases would have on her ability to pay. After 8 years, she was forced to move to a similar facility in Texas. Her 1 bedroom assisted living apartment cost went from $7000 to $3600 (yes, I know things are cheaper in TX but not THAT much cheaper). She had to leave her friends, etc. This woman personifies why it bothers me . . . .

ved
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by ved » Wed Oct 11, 2017 2:31 pm

CRTR wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 2:07 pm

2. This particular operation is a for-profit entity. I learned from my friend that did some consulting work for them, share distributions were running ~20+% per year. So, in the setting of the above, owners maintained a ~20%/year yield.
This is a breach of trust by your friend. As a consultant, one is expected to keep non-public client data confidential.
By giving you specific info about a specific client, he is (at best) untrustworthy, and (at worst) liable for some significant damages.

JBTX
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Re:

Post by JBTX » Wed Oct 11, 2017 2:45 pm

jasonp99 wrote:
Mon Nov 16, 2009 11:42 pm
fyi, there is also a Sun City in Georgetown, TX. Not as hot as Phoenix, but more humid (I live in Austin, about an hour south of Georgetown).
There is also The Village around Ocala FL. It is huge.

https://www.thevillages.com

I think they even have on site Fidelity Investment Center and other such places. My parents in their 80s live in North Fl and have visited it, and it is too much hustle and bustle for them. To speak to the level of “activity” (and in no way to diminish this excellent thread) it apparently has one of the highest rates of VD in FL. Apparently if you wear a certain style/color of shoes it means you are “available”.

cautious
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by cautious » Wed Oct 11, 2017 3:55 pm

I fit many of the descriptions here - parents gone, no spouse, no children. Plenty of loving nieces and nephews but none in my state - and I don't want to disrupt their lives to take care of me. After a serious accident, continuing medical problems, and seeing a neighbor become too disabled to find her own living arrangements, I decided to look over retirement communities. I found one I liked, and then wondered what I was waiting for. I was not looking forward to selling my wonderful home, but it would be much worse if I had to do it in poor health. So I moved and I'm glad I did.

I'm 83 and live in a Continuing Care Retirement Community (CCRC). I am in a physically secure setting, and all the hassles of owning and taking care of my home are over with - and I enjoy the wonderful memories. I am physically secure here, have access to emergency care, and can be as reclusive as I like. But there are so many activities and opportunities for socializing that my biggest problem is keeping my calendar clear. My facility is non-profit, associated with a religious community but they are not intrusive. We have a mix of agnostics, secular humanists, Jewish, Muslims, Quakers, and Christian residents. Political views differ as well but we are civilized and accomodating about that too.

This past year WA State passed a Bill of Rights for residents of CCRCs. Several other states have enacted similar legislation. I recommend that anyone looking into a retirement facility ask for that information. Before signing ask for a copy of the contract to explore with an attorney. We have access to the AG with complaints and are entitled to information about our facility's financial status. Our yearly increase has been about 4% but that's less than others in downtown Seattle. It is modest given what's going on in the economy, and what my utilities and taxes would have been as the economy is booming. (The home I sold six years ago has doubled in price.) In addition I have many amenities here I didn't have at home - gym, pool, dining, private parking, film nights, spiritual services, etc.

After several years of living here in comfort, I identified a caregiver who knows the facility and local hospitals well, and made him my DPOA for Health Care in case of a medical emergency. He is the on-site person when I have minor surgery w/anesthesia who knows my wishes until my relatives who have traditional DPOA and Executor responsibilities can fly in. They have all met and are clear about my choices. I have detailed End-Of-Life documents. Best of all I'm in a place where people will care for me physically, emotionally, and spiritually - if I want them to.

runner540
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by runner540 » Wed Oct 11, 2017 4:15 pm

cautious wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 3:55 pm
I fit many of the descriptions here - parents gone, no spouse, no children. Plenty of loving nieces and nephews but none in my state - and I don't want to disrupt their lives to take care of me. After a serious accident, continuing medical problems, and seeing a neighbor become too disabled to find her own living arrangements, I decided to look over retirement communities. I found one I liked, and then wondered what I was waiting for. I was not looking forward to selling my wonderful home, but it would be much worse if I had to do it in poor health. So I moved and I'm glad I did.

I'm 83 and live in a Continuing Care Retirement Community (CCRC). I am in a physically secure setting, and all the hassles of owning and taking care of my home are over with - and I enjoy the wonderful memories. I am physically secure here, have access to emergency care, and can be as reclusive as I like. But there are so many activities and opportunities for socializing that my biggest problem is keeping my calendar clear. My facility is non-profit, associated with a religious community but they are not intrusive. We have a mix of agnostics, secular humanists, Jewish, Muslims, Quakers, and Christian residents. Political views differ as well but we are civilized and accomodating about that too.

This past year WA State passed a Bill of Rights for residents of CCRCs. Several other states have enacted similar legislation. I recommend that anyone looking into a retirement facility ask for that information. Before signing ask for a copy of the contract to explore with an attorney. We have access to the AG with complaints and are entitled to information about our facility's financial status. Our yearly increase has been about 4% but that's less than others in downtown Seattle. It is modest given what's going on in the economy, and what my utilities and taxes would have been as the economy is booming. (The home I sold six years ago has doubled in price.) In addition I have many amenities here I didn't have at home - gym, pool, dining, private parking, film nights, spiritual services, etc.

After several years of living here in comfort, I identified a caregiver who knows the facility and local hospitals well, and made him my DPOA for Health Care in case of a medical emergency. He is the on-site person when I have minor surgery w/anesthesia who knows my wishes until my relatives who have traditional DPOA and Executor responsibilities can fly in. They have all met and are clear about my choices. I have detailed End-Of-Life documents. Best of all I'm in a place where people will care for me physically, emotionally, and spiritually - if I want them to.
Thanks for sharing your story, and best wishes fr the future. Very good actionable ideas.

InMyDreams
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by InMyDreams » Wed Oct 11, 2017 6:59 pm

cautious wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 3:55 pm

After several years of living here in comfort, I identified a caregiver who knows the facility and local hospitals well, and made him my DPOA for Health Care in case of a medical emergency. He is the on-site person when I have minor surgery w/anesthesia who knows my wishes until my relatives who have traditional DPOA and Executor responsibilities can fly in.
This sounds like the kind of situation I'd like to find. How did you find your local choice of DPOA? How far away are your nearest relatives?

littlebird
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by littlebird » Wed Oct 11, 2017 7:56 pm

InMyDreams wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 6:59 pm
cautious wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 3:55 pm

After several years of living here in comfort, I identified a caregiver who knows the facility and local hospitals well, and made him my DPOA for Health Care in case of a medical emergency. He is the on-site person when I have minor surgery w/anesthesia who knows my wishes until my relatives who have traditional DPOA and Executor responsibilities can fly in.
This sounds like the kind of situation I'd like to find. How did you find your local choice of DPOA? How far away are your nearest relatives?
The poster lives in a facility with caregivers and chose one of them to be her medical POA holder.

littlebird
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Re:

Post by littlebird » Wed Oct 11, 2017 8:07 pm

gd wrote:
Sun Nov 15, 2009 9:48 am
Hello, I'm coming out of very occasional lurking because of this post. I'm married, no children by choice, siblings with

A question following up on posts above, which have touched on this-- I'd like to get some ideas for *specific* resources or ways to locate financially and ethically trustworthy for-fee guardians in advance-- lifestyle as well as financial. For example, if I ended up in a bad nursing home, a service that would seek out a more appropriate one at my request. That would go beyond a financial-guardian role, I think. With assets and no children, I'm toying with the idea of an explicit agreement with nieces/nephews in return for explicit inheritances they probably would not receive otherwise, but it's an uncomfortable path.
Google "geriatric social workers" and "geriatric case workers" along with your nearest city/large town

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VictoriaF
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Re: Re:

Post by VictoriaF » Wed Oct 11, 2017 8:27 pm

gd wrote:
Sun Nov 15, 2009 9:48 am
For example, if I ended up in a bad nursing home, a service that would seek out a more appropriate one at my request. That would go beyond a financial-guardian role, I think. With assets and no children, I'm toying with the idea of an explicit agreement with nieces/nephews in return for explicit inheritances they probably would not receive otherwise, but it's an uncomfortable path.
Apart from the social awkwardness of posing strict conditions to your nieces and nephews, I wonder what leverage you would have if they did not do what they promised. (And what leverage they would have against you changing your will.) For example:
1. You would need an alternative heir if your nieces and nephews did not deliver. It would be difficult for you to find a substitute if you were already physically and mentally weak.
2. If you had developed any mental infirmities, you may not be able to change your will, trusts, and other critical documents.
3. A facility may deceive your relatives when they visit, e.g., by heavily drugging you or exaggerating your mental decline.
4. If you were in a good physical condition and sound mind, you probably would not need help from your nieces and nephews.

Victoria
WINNER of the 2015 Boglehead Contest. | Every joke has a bit of a joke. ... The rest is the truth. (Marat F)

jalbert
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by jalbert » Wed Oct 11, 2017 8:38 pm

More info on senior co-housing communities, one type of aging-in-place community:

http://www.cohousing.org/aging
Risk is not a guarantor of return.

finite_difference
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Re:

Post by finite_difference » Wed Oct 11, 2017 8:52 pm

retcaveman wrote:
Sun Nov 15, 2009 12:49 am
For those who may be interested, here is an interesting answer to the Eskimo question.

http://www.straightdope.com/columns/rea ... oes-to-die
I wouldn’t necessarily trust that answer too much. Western culture has so many biases in it, that it makes it difficult for us to comprehend and understand a completely alien culture.

Probably every society, particularly those living in very harsh environments, had to do what they needed to do. It could’ve been considered an honor, similar to how samurai take their own life. They had their own complex belief systems, and believed in reincarnation, etc.

If there’s one thing I learned while growing up in the North, it’s that the Native Americans generally had enormous respect for the elderly (and life in general), whereas current American society tends to neglect and ignore the elderly, except when it comes to their vote. The elderly were considered very important for their wisdom, knowledge and experience, and would teach and transmit history through stories. Not to mention it was probably relatively difficult to become elderly in the first place.

There’s a reason why many cultures have an ingrained belief to have kids — you take care of them when they’re young, and then they take care of you when you’re old :) That’s like a natural order or something.

Fortunately modern society is much more comfortable than ancient times. Although it might be harsh to say, but no individual “owes” you anything, even though as a society I think it’s very important to take care of our both our elders and kids. If you live your life like Scrooge, then what comes around comes around. But I think there are a lot of very nice and kind people that get forgotten or left behind for no fault of their own. Here are some strategies that might work if you have no family:

1. Money helps. When my mom was dying of cancer, we hired a live in 24/7 helper and she was amazing. She was loving and caring. I don’t know what we would’ve done without her. Yes, she wouldn’t have been able to do everything by herself (likely needed 2-3 people all together, but with money that would be possible to have if you can find a trusted company, lawyer or friend to get it set up that way.)

2. If you are broke, then move to a state where you can get the best care on Medicare/Medicaid.

3. Live in a state that has strong legal support for senior citizens, e.g. not Nevada.

4. Join a good church, synagogue, mosque or temple and become very active. That’s a really great way to stay social and give back to the community, which should also mean you will be looked after too.

5. Adopt. Not without risk, and good luck trying to raise a helper, but if you selflessly and lovingly raise someone and take good care of them there’s a decent chance it could work in your favor. Just don’t expect anything, since that’s poison.

6. In times of need, you’ll find out who your good friends are.

7. Stay healthy. If you exercise and eat right and look after yourself, barring senility and health issues you could be very independent into your 90s.

8. Robot helpers. Won’t help you now, but by 2040 I think if you have enough money you’ll be able to get one.
The most precious gift we can offer anyone is our attention. - Thich Nhat Hanh

Saving$
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by Saving$ » Wed Oct 11, 2017 9:05 pm

stimulacra wrote:
Tue Oct 10, 2017 12:42 pm
Saw this article on The New Yorker about professional guardians who systemically strip the elderly of their civil rights and assets.

How the Elderly Lose Their Rights
Guardians can sell the assets and control the lives of senior citizens without their consent—and reap a profit from it.
http://bit.ly/2xs64pT
Thank you for posting the link to this article. This is TERRIFYING! If people with engaged, competent and caring children cannot avoid this terrible fate, there is little hope for those without. This article literally made me weep...I am in shock this can happen in 21st century US...

CRTR
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by CRTR » Wed Oct 11, 2017 9:51 pm

ved wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 2:31 pm
CRTR wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 2:07 pm

2. This particular operation is a for-profit entity. I learned from my friend that did some consulting work for them, share distributions were running ~20+% per year. So, in the setting of the above, owners maintained a ~20%/year yield.
This is a breach of trust by your friend. As a consultant, one is expected to keep non-public client data confidential.
By giving you specific info about a specific client, he is (at best) untrustworthy, and (at worst) liable for some significant damages.
Good point . . . but not sure if applies in this case. She was making a Powerpoint Presentation and some printed materials which included this information, for distribution/sales to potential investors. We used to give summary docs to potential new MD partners at our centers. I never considered those confidential. Don't know if you can call it confidential if it's for public consumption. On the other hand, if she had shown me actual financials, that would be another story altogether and you would be spot on!! Which also makes me think . . . maybe the distributions really weren't, in reality, that high. Maybe they pulled that number out of a hat for the sales pitch. . . .

cautious
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by cautious » Wed Oct 11, 2017 11:29 pm

InMyDreams wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 6:59 pm
cautious wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 3:55 pm

After several years of living here in comfort, I identified a caregiver who knows the facility and local hospitals well, and made him my DPOA for Health Care in case of a medical emergency. He is the on-site person when I have minor surgery w/anesthesia who knows my wishes until my relatives who have traditional DPOA and Executor responsibilities can fly in.
This sounds like the kind of situation I'd like to find. How did you find your local choice of DPOA? How far away are your nearest relatives?
He worked for a home care agency. We have several agencies who have been vetted to work with residents in Independent Living. I observed him with clients, also checked with the spiritual director who had been here forever, and eventually asked him to represent me in an emergency. It would be a conflict of interest for him to be both my DPOA and caregiver, but he knows caregivers from other agencies who would be a good match. Currently he is a DPOA for many other residents, and Executor for others.

My DPOA and Executor relatives live in CA, IL, CO, and Texas.

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6miths
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by 6miths » Wed Oct 11, 2017 11:58 pm

A copy of Atul Gawande's 'Being Mortal' is sitting on my bedside table and I have read and listened to it a few times. Also give it to students I teach. An wise old psychiatrist told me years ago when I was his student that the secret to happiness in old age was to have at least two daughters. Times have probably changed but it seemed like good advice at the time and I am lucky enough to have four children two of whom are of the fairer sex. His advice isn't particularly helpful for those with no children or with no children who are close of course. A large social circle and a caring community would likely be helpful. Some people find this in their local church and some in their community. I recently signed up for community odd jobs programme which does tasks for those who can't and presumably can't afford to hire professionals. Obviously things like legal decision making are more difficult to deal with.
'It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so!' Mark Twain

billthecat
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Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Post by billthecat » Thu Oct 12, 2017 12:17 am

khaleesi1 wrote:
Sat Oct 07, 2017 8:56 am
This is one sad thread. I'm going to put more effort into dating ASAP.
Too risky.

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