Not a happy life for some seniors

Who said when you become a senior, you are in your ‘golden years.’ Don’t believe a word of it.

To the editor:

Who said when you become a senior, you are in your ‘golden years.’ Don’t believe a word of it.

I am a volunteer driver for Interior Health and most I take to their doctors can’t afford any other means. This is the only time they actually see daylight. Most stay indoors weeks on end as they have no means of transportation, no where to go.

Doctors don’t realize what the actual costs are for seniors to come visit them. The ones with no transportation must take a cab there and back. If prescriptions or x-rays are required they need to call a taxi for this as well. Some seniors will need to go to two or three places in the same day and pay well over $80 for cabs.

The handyDART and taxi savers are a good idea but the handyDART only comes at certain times and drops them off at certain places, so there’s a lot of frustrating waiting required, but it is a cheaper way to travel. Taxi savers costs half of the taxi fare, plus tips. Not everyone can get these taxi savers, I have been told.

The biggest outcry of alarm and fear for all seniors is when their doctor takes away their driving privilege. Gone in a flash, their independence is finished. Now they have to rely on others for help. Can you imagine one day your doctor saying, “You can no longer drive. Sorry.” Think hard about that, it is like losing an arm or a leg.

Depend on their children? Give me a break. They are busy raising a family.

Do any of you lucky seniors living in your own homes or apartments know how much it is a month to move into a seniors dwelling? How much extra for assisted living? It will shock the daylights out of you, and they say Kelowna is much cheaper than the Coast. (I can see why they are called resorts.) This scares me as I am getting long in the tooth and someday will have to make a quick decision about where I should live. What bridge I will pick to live under?

The seniors who have a home to sell in today’s market can afford these high costs at the senior resorts, but most who don’t have that equity, how will they manage? I imagine the government helps them but gone is the luxury you have been used to—you go where there is a room available. That is how we will end our lives most of us, in doom and gloom.

I always have wondered in awe why, over the years, our government gives away fortunes to other countries who really don’t give a rat’s ass about Canada. Most of the money, I’m sure, goes into deep pockets or to purchase more arms. Canadian seniors who have helped put Canada on the map are forgotten. It’s not bloody fair. It would be great if you could live out your life in style and dignity, not stuck in some small room surrounded in drudgery and gloom.

Being a senior today is a lot better than in my grandmother’s day 60 years ago but, by God, it should be a long ways better.

I really feel sorry for the people who are about to become seniors with no equity or investments, ones who never planned their old age. You can’t even imagine how your future will abruptly change. All I can add is good luck!

Wayne Harris,

Kelowna

 

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