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Helping Seniors of Brevard “Just a Phone Call or Visit Away!”

By Joe Steckler, President

How often have you heard someone say, “I wish I had called them” or “I wish I had visited them”…”but now it is too late.” If we are being honest, it is something most of us have heard quite often. As a senior advocate I encounter this lament all the time. It is a problem that can be addressed, and many times solved, through a better understanding of interpersonal relationships.

Perhaps the most typical time these words are used is at the passing of a spouse, dear friend, or parent. In my work with seniors, I have found the younger generation’s neglect of parents to be one of the most frequent forms of elder abuse in families. It is easy to become self-centered and place our own needs before those of other family members. Why do we do this? Mostly, I think we forget that others like and need our attention.

Truly this opens a Pandora’s Box, for any one can die and cause a family member regret for many years, some never recovering from the lack of attention they could have devoted to another family member before death occurred. While this topic could be the source of many articles, most of us know what we can do to eliminate the hurt so often experienced by elders. Simply be more attentive, more aware of others, more aware of what our inattention to loved ones can cause them.

Phone calls on a regular basis are wonderful, but if the call is hurried or does not seem germane to what the call should be about, we can cause more hurt than comfort.

Establishment of good interpersonal relationships or expressions of love must be carefully developed. We listen to what is being said but do we really understand? In our age of iPhones and other electronic devices, it is easy to be in another world while sitting across from someone. We all have our opinion of the importance of phone calls, text messages, etc., but rudeness or inattention in any form is still hurtful.
As the world changes, all in it changes. Some change is good, some not so good. Existing in a technological world is difficult for many elders. Some adapt to change, but not all, so it is imperative that we respect the many personalities, life styles, and customs that make up our world. A kind word, a well-intended comment, a thoughtful expression all can improve someone’s day. Taking time out from our own agenda involves little effort, but could mean a lot to a forgotten or ignored loved one. Undivided personal attention will be long remembered. What can you do to make someone else have a better day? Try understanding what is said.

Joe Steckler is the President of Helping Seniors of Brevard, a non profit organization designed to advocate, educate, and fundraise on behalf of Brevard’s senior citizens. Feel free to contact us at: or calling: 321-473-7770


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