Monday, September 14, 2009

Nasty, Brutish, and Long -- Ira Rosofsky

The subtitle is Adventures in Old Age and Eldercare. The author, Ira Rosofsky, is "a psychologist who travels around to nursing homes and talks to sad, confused, and, occasionally, happy old people." There's no privacy in a nursing home, and not much dignity, either. No one wants to be in one, but lots of people are. As Rosofsky says, ten years from now, it'll be the depression babies. Twenty years from now, the Boomers. "Will the Beatles songbook replace the Glenn Miller sing-along? Will I nod off in my wheelchair in the face of an endless YouTube loop?"

Depressed yet? There's more. Plenty of loss and suffering. Death and dementia. Loneliness. All those things we hate to think about.

Luckily Rosofsky has a sense of humor and great humanity. The book's not nearly as depressing as it could have been. And we all need to know this stuff. How should you choose a nursing home? What about those even more final decisions, the ones that come at the very end.

If you have elderly parents, you should read this book. If you've getting along yourself, you should read this book. It won't cheer you up, but it'll be good for you.


pattinase (abbott) said...

Seeing it close up for five years now, it's pretty daunting. And I don't seem many folks that aren't depressed. They seem to lose the ability to talk to each other. I'm not sure why but they mostly seem to inhabit worlds of their own.

Bill Crider said...

I recommend the book, Patti.

Anonymous said...

I don't want to read anything that's good for me.

*puts fingers in ears*




George said...

I'll pick up NASTY, BRUTISH, & LONG. Somehow, I find myself overloaded with providing elder care--a situation I would not have imagined 10 years ago. Why didn't I see this coming...