You! That’s right, you, the author of a new book on elder care, or “long-term care expert,” or Assisted Living CEO…
It’s shower time!
What I’m about to say may not seem important to you, but I CAN ASSURE YOU it’s damn important to me, and millions like me. (But don’t worry, your time is coming.)
Next to toileting, showering it’s one of our most intimate and private moments. And here’s how it works, for example, in an assisted living facility.
You’re a shy, reserved, 86 year-old recent widow with episodes of syncope.. With the exception of your husband and doctor, you’ve never disrobed in front of anyone. Suddenly, you find yourself stripping down in front of a twenty-something year-old man whose name you don’t even know.
Want to have some real fun? In our example, let’s mix up the genders and ages. And don’t forget about the “trainees” who pop in during your shower to observe.
Now, here’s the worst part: just when you’ve finally become comfortable with someone undressing/washing/dressing you, that person gets sucked into the Great Personal Care Attendant Revolving Door. Why? Because these angels of mercy — many are women of color, doing their best to raise young children — quickly discover you can’t pay the rent and feed the children on $8.50/hr.