Beware the ‘Befriender’

It’s often true that older people feel lonelier as their children leave the nest, their friends move south and their spouses pass away. That’s one reason they’re particularly vulnerable to new “friends” who in truth are out to exploit them. As Katherine Pearson, a professor at Penn State’s Dickinson School of Law, explains in the Elder Law Prof Blog, these “befrienders” aim to gain the trust – and eventually access to the assets – of their victims. But if you …

Why This City Has Outlawed Doorknobs

The Sun Is Setting on the Humble Doorknob. That’s the Vancouver Sun headline describing the city’s new building code, which will soon outlaw twisty doorknobs  – and traditional faucet handles, too - in new construction. The paper takes the positive view that, far from being banished, doorknobs are being “legislatively upgraded to levers more conducive to the arthritic, gnarled or weakened hands we earn with age.” >> Sign up for the AARP Health Newsletter That sounds like a promising development. AARP has …

Managing Mom’s Money? Do It Right.

Stacks of unopened bills, calls from creditors, compulsive purchases from websites or TV shopping networks, donating sums of money to questionable charities – these may be the signs that it’s time to talk to Mom and Pop about managing their finances. It’s not an easy talk to have. And it’s not an easy job to do. Handling the finances for your parents, or other elderly relatives, involves more than just paying their bills. To understand what’s involved in carrying out …

Standing with Caregivers

The following is a guest post by Peter Rosenberger – Caregiver and AARP Tennessee Volunteer Today’s 65 million caregivers often find themselves pulling their hair out as they find their lifestyle dramatically altered by the constant challenges involved in caring for a chronically ill, disabled, or elderly loved one. In my experience, I have discovered that the greatest issue caregivers struggle with is not insurance but rather assurance:  They’re frightened, burned-out, and daily wondering if they will survive caring for …

Meet the Women Fighting a Voter ID Law

The U.S. Justice Department has filed suit against the voter ID law in Texas, but two older African American women are behind separate legal challenges to new voter ID requirements in North Carolina. The state has one of the nation’s most wide-ranging voter ID laws and the first to pass since the U.S. Supreme Court struck down part of the Voting Rights Act. In North Carolina state court, Alberta Currie, 78, claims she’s no longer able to vote, as she …

Virginia Johnson: She Helped Bring Sex Out of the Bedroom

In 1957, Virginia Johnson, a divorced mother of two, saw an ad for a position as a research assistant at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. The job turned out to be working for Dr. William H. Masters, a gynecologist who’d begun to study a topic that was largely taboo: sex. Johnson took the job, and it was the start of a partnership that would change America. Johnson, who died on July 24 at age 88 in St. Louis, …