If you’re in good health and live on your own, your adult children don’t need to know your every whereabouts. They do not need to know everything you are doing. Attempting to do this will drive you and your kids crazy.
If you require that level of care, there are facilities and services to help with watching after you 24 hours a day 7 days a week 365 days a year. That is not what I’m referencing. I write about the widower that still lives on his own.
I spent from December 2014 when my mother passed away to my father’s death in June 2017 as my dad’s primary caregiver. I also had an out of state sibling that was a fantastic help. From 2008 until my dad’s passing in June 2017 I dealt with my father and my mother almost every day.
Less than eighteen months after dad’s death I am now a widower. My experiences with him influence many of my choices and decisions.
Yes, my father was lonely after mom passed away. Fortunately, they had been going to morning coffee for more than a decade at a local restaurant. He and mother had a group of friends they saw and visited with daily. The friends were supportive after mom died. They did an excellent job of checking on dad. If he weren’t at the cafe for morning coffee, they would call and check on him. If he had a cough, they would tell him to see the doctor. If he failed to attend and they couldn’t get him to answer his telephone they called me.
Unfortunately, the group of friends was in their late seventies to early nineties in age. They were old. In dad’s last couple of years, most of his friends died. It reminded me that we need to add anew friends all our life our we may find ourself outliving them.
During dad’s last year I spoke with him on average of three times a day. I saw him in person over seventy-five times, and that’s with me living fifty miles from him with one of the largest cities in the USA and its traffic seated between my house and his house.
I would get calls from his coffee friends saying they couldn’t get him to answer his phone or sometimes door. What was happening was if he didn’t want to talk to them he ignored them. He took my calls except sometimes he was technologically challenged. He frequently turned off his telephones ringer which caused me to work to check on him.
I didn’t want my grown children to experience that type of worry. I came up with a solution. I made a private Facebook group for my children, brother, and late wife’s sisters where they could use it to track me.
Why would I do this? I didn’t want my children wondering where I was and why I wasn’t home. I would post on the Facebook Group that I went to the grocery store and that I was now home or that I had gone to morning coffee and went walking, etc.
I also put pictures of myself and my cars with the license plate visible where the group members (my family) would have the info they needed if a “Silver Alert” needed to by issue because I was missing.
I am pretty disciplined and post information and updates to the group about ninety percent of the time. One of the beautiful things about the Facebook group page is it shows me if they’ve looked at it even if they don’t leave a comment. In this way, it also gives me peace of mind.
Groups are meant to be a close circle of people who share and keep in touch on Facebook. I named the Facebook Group I created “Keeping Track of Jimmie Aaron Kepler.”
An excellent article of creating a Facebook Group can be found at How to Create a Facebook Group.
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