The elder members of our society have great amounts of wisdom and experience to share with the rest of the world. Unfortunately, in many ways, the senior population has gradually been forgotten and isn’t being respected in the ways that are deserved. With over 13% of the world’s population now over the age of 65, the wasted resource of elder knowledge has a great impact on future generations.
As technology continues to replace human contact, many senior family members are lost in the shuffle of busy lives. Many family members feel that a simple weekly telephone call or a text message is sufficient in showing care and concern for the elders of their family. In reality, the loss of physical contact and the showing of respect for the experience and knowledge of our seniors has resulted in volumes of lost knowledge.
Some cultures still revere their elder generations and ensure that they are well cared for. Western culture in places like New York or South Carolina seems to take the modern approach that seniors are a problem to be dealt with at arm’s length. Many are moved to retirement homes away from their family and friends, making them vulnerable to loneliness, depression, and even abuse. If you know a family member that is struggling in a nursing home, you may want to contact a nursing home abuse lawyer in SC for help.
Respecting and honoring our elders should be the cornerstone of our family values. The experience, vitality, and knowledge that they bring into our lives should be cherished. Let’s look at a few important ways that we can all honor and respect our elders.
Spend Time With Them
Seniors are one of the largest sectors of the population that are dealing with loneliness and depression. With so much time on their hands following retirement, there are many hours in the day that are spent on their own. A vibrant social calendar is one of the many ways that seniors can stay engaged and feel purposeful. Family members should make it a priority to make regular in-person visits to their elders. Take the time to listen to their stories and share experiences.
Our elders come from another time when manners and polite behavior were valued as a sign of respect. When you visit with your elder family members, always speak in a polite manner to show them that you respect their values and experience. Listen to their words with empathy and attention, their knowledge and experience will be beneficial to you.
Ask for Advice
The seniors in your family have a lifetime of experiences and knowledge to share. While you may not believe your older family members could relate to a modern problem that you are having, you may be surprised at the insight that they can provide. Everyone wants to feel like their opinion is respected and that they have a purpose, so the next time you are struggling with a problem, try getting advice from your senior family member.
Ask About Heritage
The stories that are bound in the memories of our elders hold valuable insight and knowledge. When visiting with an elder, take the time to ask them about their history, the family traditions that have been lost, or their unique experiences. Exploring your own family history through the stories of your elders can give you a deeper understanding of your family dynamics and bring you closer together.
Our elders won’t be around forever for us to enjoy and cherish. If you are lucky enough to have a senior family member, take advantage of the time you have to learn more about their lives, discover interesting bits of your family history and gain a deeper understanding of your own origins. Our elders deserve our respect, love and to be honored for their life experiences.