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Companionship Helps Alleviate Lonely Nights

Senior women playing cards together.
Join a gardening, cooking or card club to meet with those who enjoy the same things that you do.

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Options exist for senior widows and widowers who feel isolated because they can no longer drive. Senior centers and churches are good places to start. The local Home Instead® office can lend a hand, too.

Q. I’m an 80-year-old widow who can’t drive at night anymore. I get so lonely in the evenings. What can I do to occupy my time?

Evenings can certainly be lonely times for widows and widowers, and not being able to get out at night could limit someone’s social life. It doesn’t have to, however. Do you know any other seniors who might like to share some of their evenings with you?

Perhaps other seniors who can still drive at night would be able and willing to come to your home for dinner or a game of cards? Perhaps they could get a group together to visit you or pick you up for dinner, a concert or a movie. There may well be others in your community who are just as eager for companionship as you. Why not call your local church or senior center to see if they know anyone who might be interested? Many churches have senior organizations that plan events for your age group and provide transportation as well.

If you’re not always able to have friends over, there are other ways to occupy your time. Join a gardening, cooking or card club to meet with those who enjoy the same things that you do. Or write letters to those old friends you’ve lost touch with just to renew acquaintances and friendships. Do you have a computer? If so, emailing can also be a great way to communicate with others.

Contact your local computer store, community college or even a high school for information about classes to learn how to get online. Students might be willing to tutor you free of charge. Or if the computer is not your cup of tea, pick up the phone to call a friend or relative for a chat.

If you like to read, contact another senior who might enjoy the same books as you do. Together you could review the book at your home.

Here’s another idea: Why not consider hiring a companion? For example, the local Home Instead® office works to match seniors with CAREGiversSM of similar ages and interests. A CAREGiver could accompany you to evening events or just spend time with you at home. A CAREGiver also could help you organize social events with other seniors. Call your local office today to learn more.

Last revised: January 9, 2012

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Thoughts and stories from others
  1. August 15, 2013 at 10:07 am | Posted by Mary Ellen Greer

    In Joplin, one can join Silver Haired Legislators through the Area Agency on Aging. This group helps Seniors from all over the State of Missouri in making sure they are well looked after. For instance, we are the group responsible for having Nursing Homes put up lit Exit Signs in Hallways, and having them lit, so one can find their way out of their room at night, if need be. Another, is the Silver Alert, where we make sure when a person wanders away from home, the alert will go out immediately, works just like Amber Alert for children. One can learn to use the computer by going to the Area Agency on Aging, and participating in their learning program there. Many have gone back into the workforce, because they are updated on the latest technology also. Hope this helps many alleviate the lonesome time that happens when one loses a spouse. Thought I'd share my thoughts.


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