Do you love your parents? Do you want to keep them alive as much as possible? One study found you can keep your mother living longer by keeping her company. So now it makes all those times she said you were “killing her” by not calling her on the phone or visiting all the more horribly ironic.
This isn’t just true for mothers, company benefits all elderly people, even ones you are not related to. After all, humans are social creatures. The study, “Loneliness in Older Persons: A Predictor of Functional Decline and Death” was conducted by the University of California, San Francisco, and involved 1,600 adults with the average age of 71. The lonelier and older the participants were, the higher mortality rates they had.
In this vein, the study also showed that the older participants who were in nursing homes and received interaction with same-age peers were much better off than those who were more isolated.
According to Shareably, “You bring a lot more experience to your friendships when you’re older,” says Rosemary Bliezner, a professor of human development at Virginia Tech.
“You know what’s worth fighting about and what’s not worth fighting about,” she said.
Added to that, now maybe you will feel less guilty about sending your elderly parents to a nursing home so they can make some new friends. The study actually recommends it! You can remind your parents that you’re doing this to keep them alive as long as you can. That “Shady Pines” is looking better and better (and you know Sophia moved back there in one of the sequels and was just fine!)