Online Chatting: Senior Citizens

Will online chatting for senior citizens become very common in the near future? Many people in assisted living facilities or nursing homes might find their lives enriched by this. Though the elderly are for the most part currently without the comfort level required to use computers without a lot of hard work and organized, directed thought, I think in the near future many of these people might be able blabber away on autopilot, as using the computer/internet is now second nature to so many people.

I think many such homes for the elderly have introduced cats and dogs into the living routine in order to bring more warmth and companionship into the mix of their lives. Would extensive online chatting do anything similar to help enrich their lives? Could it be detrimental in any way? I can imagine some cranky old man having a heart attack from using a philosophy site. Or I can imagine some cute old couple becoming “pen pals” and having a long distance love affair of sorts, all in cyberspace.

Could people with Alzheimer’s still use the internet, or is this not possible? If possible, and if many people with Alzheimer’s start using chat sites, how would that affect the content such sites (i.e. how would it affect ILP)?

Would the elderly be more inclined or less inclined to abuse rules of internet use? Would they pretend they were 16 again? Revive their youth in a sort of alternate reality? Could the power-hungry among them use the skills they’ve honed over decades to direct and manipulate large crowds? Might some of them enjoy having an increased sense of having an actual role in the social sphere, becoming something like guardians of culture, protecting youth from grave error, instilling a sense of family values in people, or open-mindedness towards other cultures?


I’ll just sit and watch this one.

Hey. you might as well join in since you’re half way there! :laughing: :laughing:


As I approached my 60’s, I too thought it would be a great idea as we become housebound and isolated from the larger community. I still think it’s a great idea, but it will have to wait until people in their 40’s today become the 70 year olds of tomorrow. I have a number of friends who are computer literate. They email, send pics, and touch base once in awhile. But none of them feel comfortable with real-time chat. Why? I don’t know. Your idea is spot on, but I think it will have to wait for another 20 or 30 years before it becomes a commonplace activity.

As for me, I plan on spreading hate and discontent just as long as I can… :mrgreen:

Yeah, dunno why, but I have real-time chat-o-phobia too. [As Tents knows] :confused:

I think it depends upon access to the hardware, keyboards are not arthritis friendly. Microphones would be easier. But yea, I can see the net and chatrooms as therapy for Alzheimers patients. Imagine talking to someone who can fill in gaps or is going through the same thing. You may not remember it all but at least you have something or someone to help on a daily basis. Would they resort to youthful antics, well meet Tab and Tent. that ought to answer your question oh and there are a few other not so young youngsters parading around :banana-dance: :banana-dance: :banana-dance: :banana-dance: :banana-dance: :banana-dance: :banana-dance:

Just get that webcam up and running, sweetie. I promise to be a gentleman. Trust me… :evilfun:

I rest my case :laughing:

Whoa, I forgot about this thread. #-o

Tentative, I think the time will come when all those baby boomers reach about 80 years old or so. So yes, maybe another 20 years. According to my predictions, that’s when all hell will break loose.


If they have Alzheimers, how are they gonna carry on a chat? It would be chaos. But maybe kind of entertaining. But, frankly, chat tends to be pretty mundane and I don’t think I’m gonna like reading fluffy prattle coming from an 80-year-old any more than I like it from a 30-year-old. And when I get to be 80 myself, I expect that I’ll have even more of a desire to live each minute as fully as I can before I croak. I’d rather read some good books, listen to my music and ogle the lawn boys at the nursing home, think about the good old days, heh!

When I am eighty years old, I’m going to spend as much time as possible complaining and launching into unnecessarily long personal narratives/tirades about how things were never a certain way when I was younger. The beauty of it is that I will direct these tirades towards young ladies in their late teens or early twenties who are too polite to tell me to shut my goddamn mouth because I’m boring the shit out of them.

As a matter of fact, despite not being particularly (read: at all) religious, I’ll probably go ahead and start attending Church because those are the type of people that would not tell an eighty year old to shut his mouth.

At least, that’s what I will do if I am no longer able to play golf. I intend to retire at the age of seventy-five if I live that long, so at that point, I probably want to focus on hanging out with my wife (if she is still alive), playing golf, and going to culinary school…as long as they don’t try to make me cook meat.


I like your style. I have similar thoughts. I can hardly wait till I’m 80 so I can say what I really think. :laughing:

Sounds like the good life to me! GL with your hopes and dreams.

Thanks, TheBerto!


You’re going to get there a year or two before me, so let me know what I have to look forward to!

Oops, nobody told me you were supposed to wait until 80 to do that! Where is that *@$# rule written down, anyway? :imp:

Umm, truth told, I don’t think anyone will see a difference (for either one of us) :wink: Rules? What rules? We make 'm up as we go along. Ever played Calvin ball?

Reminds me of Dylan Moran, the comedian:

Ha, I feel exactly the same way. I’ll stick to ogling the candy stripers though. :-"