1. How to Build Positivity in Married Life? : Click Here
    Dismiss Notice
  2. Would you like to join the IL team? See open jobs!
    Dismiss Notice
  3. What can you teach someone online? Tell us here!
    Dismiss Notice
  4. If someone taught you via skype, what would you want to learn? Tell us here!
    Dismiss Notice

Oldage home VS staying with children in old age

Discussion in 'Relationship With In-Laws' started by GPriya, Jun 4, 2007.

  1. GPriya

    GPriya Bronze IL'ite

    Messages:
    302
    Likes Received:
    34
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Gender:
    Female
    Hi Ladies,

    I just wanted to start this topic of oldage home VS staying with children in old age.

    In India today, the most common issue is caring for old age people.. be it parents or inlaws, especially if they are widowed. I strongly feel that when one becomes old, one has to be very independent unless seriously ill, to keep people around peaceful and happy.

    In my life, my mom has been independent (she is 70) being a retired teacher, lives on her pension in her own apartment in Chennai. Helathwise, she takes very good care of herself with regular walking , a very disciplined diet, lots of temple visits and chanting slokas along with watching every tv serial.. and keeping herself very peaceful, happy and worryfree. I am considered one of the luckiest among my friends.
    Now, the issue is with my father in law whose wife died 10 years ago. FIL has always been a difficult person to live with even for my MIL, bcos of his rigid traditional practices and food habits and lots of other expectations. After my MIL's death, he has visited us in the US 5 times (every year for 6 months) and the remaining time, he manages to live with his 2 married daughters. Now, his daughters are not fond of caring for him mainly bcos of his food habits and few other issues, and we have cared as much as we could during his US stay, and my husband strongly advised him to live independently in our flat in Chennai where nobody lives currently. It is a beautiful flat in the heart of the city and accessible to everywhere to all facilities, we have even arranged a cook to prepare food for him and arranged all the faclities for his peaceful living..but he refused to be on his own. He doesn't want to go to an old age home as well. He has been staying with his daughters long enough which made the son in laws feel indifferent towards him so many times, but he just doesn't care about his self respect..irrespective of the soninlaw's repeated insults. My FIL is 83 years old, very hale and healthy looks like he is only 65 or so. He just doesn't seems to understand how difficult life is for our generation and with all my hectic schedule at work and travel for various projects, he still expects fresh food .. the same rice, sambar, rasam, vegetable curry etc., 3 times as he has a very good appetite. I am glad he is healthy but he doesn't even use his hands to prepare coffee for himself....So with this attitude, he can rule me as I am his daughter in law, but the daughters made it very clear that their husbands are not thrilled to host him anymore..
    As this issue is going on for the last 10 years, life is so restless for everybody around my FIL. But he is always a happy, healthy man with good food, excellent sleep and a happy life.

    In India, I just don't understand why older people are so sentimental about going to an old age home and live peacefully with timely food, good age group friends, and a better social life..then being insulted by family. Is self respect not more important than staying with children especially knowing his stay would make them very unhappy, as he never talks, helps or even cares for anybody around but himself. He was a retired central govt employee(railway) and so he never knew about life in a corporate environment. With ordinary middle class background, we all have to work to earn our living and secure our future too which he fails to understand.

    Here are the PROs of oldage home :

    1. Self respect will be in tact.
    2. Timely food, proper care if medical attention is required, peaceful living.
    3. Same age group friends to share your ideas and can even go to temples and such pilgrimage.
    4. Emotially, staying here is better than insulted by the family or troubling the family for his selfish interest.

    There are few CONs too but in my opinion, Pros outweigh Cons when it comes to leading a peaceful, independent happy life in old age.

    Ladies, shed your thoughts on this issue.. not just for me but generally the issue of caring old people in the family is making our lives very difficult with no proper cooperation and love from them. They just fail to understand that times have changed and they have to change with times.

    Hoping to hear and learn from your suggestions,
    Geeth Priya.
     
    Loading...

  2. sunkan

    sunkan Gold IL'ite

    Messages:
    4,124
    Likes Received:
    233
    Trophy Points:
    153
    Gender:
    Female
    dear geetha,
    a very timely article which is needed for the present generation, woman are somhow able to live and usually understand the nuances of the children and never put up the tantrum as a widower can present with. now when we think back the contributions by the parent this particular aspect of their habit is very well known to all,and once the children especially a daughter is married she somehow changes according to her husband and in laws, so will not be able to concentrate on the parent so much. here is an article presented by me elsewhere it could be the answer to ur father in law too, recently he had come down with his new wife and grandson to her, but could not take them around due to his age, but accompanied and allowed them to enjoy...sunkan



    My 77 year old uncle:
    I was just 12 when he married my aunt that is the younger sister to my mother, she was a beauty on her own, and my uncle also a very handsome man, but came to know had a very high temper..

    I had fractured my ankle falling from my hand made swing, had plaster over my ankle, but that did not deter me from climbing the stairs on my rear and go up to see the groom who was screaming as someone had applied kajal that was burning his eyes. My first impression oh! My god what a scene it was he with closed eyes and the scream sending many in confusion to get water, oil what not to help him wash his eyes. When I informed my aunt she started laughing so much, we joined her..

    She was working in central bank of <?XML:NAMESPACE PREFIX = ST1 /><ST1:COUNTRY-REGION><ST1:pLACE>India</ST1:pLACE></ST1:COUNTRY-REGION> of the mylapore branch and he a physics & maths lecturer in jain college, both with very high IQ can imagine what prodigies they would bring forth in their children, a boy and a girl, both with the same analyzing mentality like their parents.

    He was a dedicated father for years after my aunt died suddenly till date don’t know with what , she just vomited blood and gone. He got them a nice seat with rishi valley school and during the holidays trying to get them here to <ST1:CITY><ST1:pLACE>Bangalore</ST1:pLACE></ST1:CITY> and always supervising whether they were getting proper ghee and curd to detail. Then on to good colleges now his son is in US married to a Bengali, and his daughter in Mumbai married to an iyengar both had love marriage and he continued his teaching career with brilliants tutorials used to fly all over India, very famous in his own right.

    Still the pang of loneliness caught up and when the children could not accommodate him along, he took sometime thinking and being coaxed by his friends now is a married man to another grandmother.When he approached the lady’s mother, she had only one condition that the marriage should be approved by the only daughter and son in law, and nothing else, the daughter came to his apartment checked with every thing had a chat with him, lucky for him they knew him a lifetime, so once approved a simple registered marriage and here he is with his grandson from the wife side. Her mother is also staying with them so a ready family, and I appreciate him taking all in along with a wife.

    He broke down saying his own grandson’s couldn’t be with him, but I consoled, so what u have one who is going around u as thatha, thatha, be happy, I know sometime some people are blessed with affection out of the family, even when he tried explaining his actions, I could only applaud him, how many of us have the guts to go ahead and be married, at this later age. Woman can somehow manage but it is tough for widowers to.

    He has amassed enough wealth for his life time, so no constrain there, and now has a family who cares for him, when he thinks of his son, his eyes do cloud, but thinking of the situation this is best for him.
    Regards sunkan
     
  3. Padmash

    Padmash Platinum IL'ite

    Messages:
    2,117
    Likes Received:
    520
    Trophy Points:
    208
    Gender:
    Female
    Hi Priya,
    condition u have mentioned is not only with ur father in law, its same for the retired male members too. even if they have unmariied children they are not able to adjust if they have to sit at home whole day without any work. ur fahter in law will never go to old age home as its against his dignity and self respect what he maintained with his wife too. With daughters father have more attachment they don't care what daughters are saying till it become heart breaking or too harsh. sometimes ur husband can only make him to change his behavoiur, try to tell him in a very decent way that u want to care for him but few things if he take care of himself life will be easy for all of u.
    But in old age very few people understand what children are saying. even though old age provide everything but what impression our society have for the people who stay in old age home-- that this man is betrayed by his own children so he is staying here, which will hurts all the parents noone will agree to go to old age home.
    u can't talk on this matter if u say anything ur father in law will take in different way. tell ur husband to make him understand y his daughter are betraying him y son in laws dont care now. may be his self respect comes to his concious and he changes himself.
    hope for good.
    bye
    padma
     
  4. sunitha

    sunitha Gold IL'ite

    Messages:
    1,610
    Likes Received:
    81
    Trophy Points:
    103
    Gender:
    Female
    Dear GPriya

    The difference between going to an old age home here and India is just this-our culture. In America,once a person is 17 yrs old,he/she leaves his/her parents and stays alone and fends for himself/herself.The family attachment is lost there itself. So,once the parents become old,the children don't feel it is their duty to take care of the parents. Whereas,in our country,children stay with their parents even after getting a job and getting married. Our system has always been to take care of our elders until their death.The family bonding and attachment is more in our culture.

    Having said all that,our elders should realise that times are changing.It is not possible for us now to lead the life which they were leading during their younger days-cooking fresh food all the time,following all tradition etc.

    I am personally not for sending my parents or my in-laws to an old age home because in India,like someone said earlier,our elders feel that they took care of their parents ,so why their children are refusing to take care of them.Also,in India,an old age home is usually associated with loneliness and a sense of being unwanted by one's own children.It is not like in the U.S. and we simply cannot compare the two.
     
  5. Aniyaa

    Aniyaa New IL'ite

    Messages:
    36
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    Gender:
    Female
    Hi ,

    Oldage is another form of childhood... They are really helpless , like children... We need to give them the same kind of treatment that we give our children...
    There are many reasons why we should care for old parents and parents-in-laws..
    We need to give them their due for bringing us up...Maybe they dint' do their best..according to us... but according to them.. they gave their all....
    Once they are gone.. we dont' have to regret.... That form of regret is really unbearable becoz we can't do anything to make up then... :cry:

    You can set a good example to your children.. dont' think abt whether they will learn from it or not.. u set an example.. thatz enough... :clap
    And not to forget.. the main part.... God will bless you (specially) for that.... :smile:

    I wish to take care of my in-laws or parents when they get old..and helpless..
    I just hope my mind does not change at that time.... I agree the actual situation will be much much tougher than just writing this...

    One form of relief... don't think that your entire life revolves in taking care of them.... Taking care of them.. just forms a small part of ur life... you have a life of ur own... your ambitions and your enjoyment....but make sure you do accomdate them...

    So All the Best... :2thumbsup:
    Bye
    Aniya..
     
  6. sujathae

    sujathae Senior IL'ite

    Messages:
    256
    Likes Received:
    7
    Trophy Points:
    23
    Gender:
    Female
    Hello all, It is a very delicate matter and lot of care has to be taken in handling the old people. Men are so used to commanding people be it in office or at home. So they cannot understand the fact that they cannot continue the same even after they r old. Then they start feeling that no one is there to take care of themand everyone disregard them and don't give the respect that is due to him. Even if the son is 50 years old the father expects him to give his salary to him and he wants to run the family. This is not possible these days. The life expectancy has also gone up thanks to the medical development. The old people should come forward to change themselves to some extent and try to adjust with their children, in-laws and grand children. They can lead a better life with their children if they change themselves. The youngsters also on the other hand realise that they too will grow old one day and they will need the support of their children in the later days of their lives. Why the old people refuse to go to old age homes? It is because the old long more for the affection of the children, which in our mechanized lives we donot have time to show. They prefer being with their kith and kin than being with unknown people in their old age.

    Hello Geetha, When money is not a matter why don't your sisters-in-law engage a cook and get the food cooked for their father? If they forcibly sent your father-in-law to old age home, they may have to regret later in their life. It is not advisable. THe entire family can sit and discuss and explain the difficulties u r experiencing to yr f-in-law and make him understand.

    Best wishes,
    Sujatha
     
  7. GPriya

    GPriya Bronze IL'ite

    Messages:
    302
    Likes Received:
    34
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Gender:
    Female
    Hi ladies,

    Thanx for all your feedback.

    I fully agree that in india, oldage home concept is not well accepted mainly because the oldies who live there always badmouth their children for sending them there. Also, society has nothing to do with how one feels about it. A self respecting, decent healthy human being will only want to live in peace in their old age, no matter where it is..be it with children, or elsewhere as long as it keeps them peaceful and causes peace around them. I personally know a few older men, who are happier in old age home with good timely food, friends, temple and concert visits, meditaion and such activities. That doesn't mean their children love them any less as the children spend a good amount of money on monthly basis for thier upkeep at the old age home. They also can visit kids for every festivity and enjoy with grand children.
    Its all easy to say..that taking care of the older people should be part of responsibility and it gives lot of satisfaction with God's blessings etc.,
    Believe it or not, It is the most difficult thing if you have to put up with a criticizing, stubborn, greedy and irritating old man who has no love or regards for his own children.

    Well, another major issue is even the media is portraying children as villains for not caring for the parents in their old age. There are some children who are very selfish but in my opinion, most of the children nowadays long to have loving, understanding, cooperative parents who can adjust and live with them and i am sure my husband and I are one of them.

    If you get a chance to visit any old age home in India, you can here a ton of stories about the evil daughter in law and not son!!!!!

    By the way, it is hard to get a good cook in Chennai and my FIL has sent her packing in just one week, so that he can get back to us to make our life difficult.

    On that note, I do want to point out that it is always the widowed men are the troublesome.. not the women as they always keep themselves occupied with some cooking, or helping out in whatever they can.

    I guess the story never ends...:yes:

    Geeth Priya.
     
  8. Kamla

    Kamla IL Hall of Fame

    Messages:
    8,454
    Likes Received:
    5,070
    Trophy Points:
    440
    Gender:
    Female
    Dear Geeth Priya,

    This is an interesting topic, very relevant to today's times.

    What you give are very valid reasons to encourage old age homes in India. Times are changing. Life expectancy has increased tremendously. Today's 60yr old often behaves like yesterday's 40yr! Family set up has changed. Gone are the days of extended families and nuclear family is the way of today. Besides, almost every other family has at least one adult child living abroad, if not more. India, with its economic growth and educational progress is slowly beginning to look like its western counter parts, the urban India sure is.

    Such evolution will bring with it the associated changes in lifestyles too. Many housewives are working women and families follow a tight schedule. A fit retired parent coming to live with the family of his or her own child will mean a lot of changes and adjustments which may not be acceptable or possible under some circumstances. Also, the older person may not feel comfortable in such a setting.

    I am sure most families willingly and lovingly take care of their parents, when the need arises. All the same, it would be a very welcome idea to have the option of old people homes or retirement homes. The choice should be available for those who prefer to stay independently. Social stigma is the biggest hurdle which prevents people from doing this. But I feel it is becoming more and more necessary for our country to start improving their old age homes. Once they become an attractive option, many people will flock to them and thus influence more towards such living.

    I personally would prefer such an alternative than to live with my own children. By saying so, it does not mean that my children are not affectionate or do not love me. God is Great and our kids adore us. But having lived an independent life, I would prefer to be that way and not burden anyone with my likes and dislikes. Besides, if one lives with people of their own age, they are bound to make friends and share much more fun. This does not mean that all the family ties are broken. Children can visit their parents or the parents can go to the son or daughter's home to celebrate special occasions and so on.

    Are there good old peoples' homes in India catering to all the needs, is the the question! The old people's homes in Europe and US are very well equipped. I have no idea about India.

    L, Kamla
     
  9. Padmash

    Padmash Platinum IL'ite

    Messages:
    2,117
    Likes Received:
    520
    Trophy Points:
    208
    Gender:
    Female
    Hi Priya,

    we can understand ur condn whatever u mentioned is true only wearer knows where shoe pinches, isn't it . its easy to advice difficult to follow. Still we are indians finally living in same society so can't leave our values, we have to foolow. Good luck
    bye
    padma
     
  10. sunitha

    sunitha Gold IL'ite

    Messages:
    1,610
    Likes Received:
    81
    Trophy Points:
    103
    Gender:
    Female
    I have visited an old age home when I was around 13 yrs of age. I don't know how much has changed in these yrs but what I felt and experienced that time was not at all what I would wish for my elders.

    The old people there were a sad lot.It was a very good home but the sadness was very evident on each one's face.

    When we spend a lot of our lifetime in America or Europe,we might tend to think that old people should spend their old age in such homes since it is an accepted concept here.Like I said earlier,here people are independent from a very early age,they don't like others interfering in their matters even if it is their own parents.Whereas in India,it is just the reverse.We are bound by society and values and most of our elders want to be with us till the end of their lives.
     
    2 people like this.

Share This Page