Warm Southern Breeze

"… there is no such thing as nothing."

Dirty Diapers and Death

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, April 2, 2012

Today, I had remarked to long-time friend that, “I sure hope we get socialized medicine in the United States soon.

I had reflected upon the thousands – literally thousands – of people I’ve seen needlessly stuffed away in Nursing Homes with no family member to love them, and the injuries and emotional insults they suffer as a result.

I continued and said, “The reason most folks send a parent or loved one to a Nursing Home is because they can’t afford to quit their jobs and take care of them like they need. What would it be like if we took the money that we now pay to folks who don’t love them, and instead, gave it to folks who do love them?

The monetary costs associated with Nursing Homes are well documented, and by some estimates, exceeds $80,000 per year. Further, in many cases, it is simply less expensive to care for a loved one in their home than it is in an institution.

In essence, we all are paying taxes to throw away our aged parents and loved ones, by placing them in the pay-for-care hands of those who do not know them like we do, nor could they ever possibly love them as much. Talk about “death panels“!

We have them now, and have had them for quite some time. They’re called “bed sores,” infection, isolation, and include an entire array of other injuries, some of which leave no physical mark… only a deep, and unhealing emotional wound.

And we’re still paying for it.

Imagine instead what it would look like if the money used for the “care” of our elderly parents was put into our own hands to allow us the opportunity to care for them in their golden and declining years.

Imagine what it would be like if young children actually learned how to tenderly love and care for their elderly grandparents or great-grandparents, while witnessing their frailty and fragility.

Imagine what it would be like if we learned how to effectively handle our own feelings of inadequacy or remorse over abandonment of a parent in their time of need by learning how to effectively care for and meet their needs… just like they did for us when we wore diapers and suckled at their breasts.

Somehow, we expect our parents to sacrifice for us when we were babes, but we refuse to return the favor. Where’s the justice and love in that?

What does that say about us?

It bespeaks poorly.

It’s more than a national embarrassment. It’s our national disgrace.

Other prosperous, civilized and industrialized nations have systems in place that allow for family members to care for one another in their waning years, rather than abandoning them in a virtual human garbage dump.

It’s time for us to do the right thing, for the right reason, and erase our national shame.

###

Ref. http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/fastats/nursingh.htm

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