Why would an active senior move into elder cohousing rather than intergenerational cohousing?
Most say it is because they want to be in an all-adult community.
OK, you are sold. You want to move into cohousing.
You are a baby-boomer, over 55 but not yet 60. Your children are grown and you lead an active, healthy lifestyle.
Or maybe you are over 65 and retired. You are still active and enjoy being around people who are younger than you are.
Why should either of you move into elder housing with a bunch of people who are O.L.D. when you do not feel or act old yourself?
1. The vast majority of people who move into elder cohousing are active physically and mentally. They don’t fit anyone’s idea of O.L.D.
2. Intergenerational cohousing communities hope to have an abundance of families with children in residence.
What does that mean to you?
Children are naturally noisy and giggly. Some people have at least partial hearing losses as they age. A noisy dining area might not be conducive to conversation for someone who has partial hearing loss.
Children also leave their skateboards, bicycles, sleds, and balls lying around on the community paths. It’s no fun to fall down as an adult and having a broken bone is even less fun.
Well, you say, but don’t people have their grandchildren come to stay?
Well, yes they do. But the grandchildren don’t stay long or have many other kids for playing ball or giggling. They tend to leave their bikes and skateboards at home–or at the very least they take them home after their visit.
Some cohousing communities with children forego a media room because children could watch unsupervised video and television there. Elder housing does not have that constraint.
Children are not known for their gourmet diet preferences, making the menus in the common house somewhat limited.
Parents of children do not have an abundance of extra time. Many retired or empty-nester cohousers find that they are doing more than their share of keeping up the community because they have the free time to do so.
Last, but not least, not everyone is going to discipline their children in ways that are effective or in a manner that you approve. If you are the kind of person to stress out about matters such as that, you will be adding a burden to your senior years.
Note: The opinions expressedherein are exclusively those of the writers or other participants and do not necessarily reflect theposition of CyberParent. They are not intended to take the place of advice of ahealth, legal, or other professional whose expertise you might need to seek.