“Respect your Elder’s!” has now reached a whole new level when it comes to senior intimacy and romance and relationships. As caregivers it is our duty to remain an advocate for our loved one’s quality of life. If they are communicating their needs and/or desires listen up! It should only aide you better in learning about them and how to remain supportive to a new interest. Respect their background, knowledge and values as they may not be the same as yours.
If you’re an outside caregiver its usually best to not have a lot of emotional reaction to the new situation but be positive while keeping their safety and best interests in mind, always reporting if you sense a cause for concern. As a caregiver we know this can be an especially challenging position to be in, and even more so if you’re a direct family member caring for a loved one. Sharing this experience together can be a blessing in disguise if handled well! Keep open communication with your loved one, listen carefully and share with them your positive experiences in discovering new relationships, don’t neglect your own need for outside relationships either.
Whether the need for a new relationship is to socialize or for new found love, the fact of the matter is just because they are aging doesn’t mean they don’t desire the same need for touch and affection or good conversation with a friend over lunch after a movie. As caregivers we should always ask, does this contribute to their quality of life in a good way?