We asked residents at IRT The Ridge whether they think intergenerational relationships are important and why. Here’s what they said . . .
“I’m close to family members of many different ages. I have made it my business to get to know what it’s like for the younger generation. We can get to talk about my life experiences and how life has changed. The young people help me with staying in touch and using new things like my phone. It’s good to be able to stay connected with the younger generation because we can learn from them. I feel the younger generation have a lot of pressure on them these days.”
“I have been lucky to maintain a relationship with many different people from different generations. These people have been carers, young family members and their friends. Being in a retirement village is good because there are always family and friends visiting and there is always someone around for a chat. I have been lucky to share in my grandchildren’s experiences from preschool, school and into their early adulthood. I love asking them questions. My grandson has always said, ‘Gee you ask a lot of questions Nana’. You are never too old to learn from them and their experiences.”
“It is certainly a pleasure to have young people in our lives. The different perspectives that we have compared to them is always interesting. The pace of life is so fast these days and having different generations talking just helps understanding between us and them. I have a number of different generations of family in my life and I thoroughly enjoy each time I get to share in their lives.”
“I feel a real sense of being alive when I see younger people. They make me feel warm inside. Every conversation with a young person allows me to add to my memories and lets me tell stories to them. I feel that having a conversation with people from all ages has kept me mentally active and young at heart, and gives me a wider view of the world. It’s interesting how many young people appreciate a good cup of tea or a coffee and a chat. I feel I learn as much from younger generations as they do from me. They can see there is a lot of life ahead of them and a lot to learn. We don’t always need to talk, just being with them is enough.”
“I feel I learn as much from younger generations as they might from stories about my life. When I had to talk about my life with some teenagers earlier in 2019 I found the experience really worthwhile. It made me think about the things I had done and the life I have experienced. These young people were quite surprised and seemed really interested. I thought I was just living my life, their life is certainly different.”
“I think it is important to have good relationships with the younger generation because I can get them to help me with new technology, especially if I have a problem setting up my phone or even the TV. Listening to stories about their lives just shows me that each generation has their own troubles and things to look forward to. Early last year we had some high school children come and ask us questions about what it was like growing up. I know times are different now and a lot has changed and it was interesting to be able to share some of those things with them.”
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