Aging in Place Technology for Youth

aging in place tech

Nothing can bring you peace but yourself.

― Ralph Waldo Emerson


Aging in Place

Who am I to argue with Ralph Waldo Emerson (May 25, 1803 – April 27, 1882), or “Waldo” as his friends used to call him. He was after all, one of the most brilliant thinkers of the mid-nineteenth century. The American essayist, lecturer, philosopher, abolitionist, and poet who led the Transcendentalist movement had much wisdom to share on a litany of topics. However, he’s only partially correct about peace being an inside job (note opening quote).

Granted, Waldo didn’t have today’s technology to think about, but if he did, I feel he might want to refine his line about “NOTHING” bringing peace of mind but yourself. I get his point, but here’s mine—aging-in-place technology can also bring you peace. And I’m speaking to younger generations (millennials and younger) about technologies designed to help your Boomer/Gen X parents with aging in place safely.

Independence vs. Inter-dependence

Aging-in-place technology theoretically was developed to provide complimentary assistance for older adults seeking “independence.” that has always been the selling point—but hear me out, aging in place is NOT about independence. If you have ever helped maintain an older adult in their own home, you know it’s done by inter-dependence.

Ok, here’s the key take home, aging-in-place technology is about YOUR PARENT’S INTER-DEPENDENCE, and YOUR INDEPENDENCE. It may sound counter intuitive but let me unpack this.

Mom and dad boomer have been sold on the idea of “independence,” fine you’re not going to unearth that one, don’t even try. But you know by having the technological capacity to be in frequent contact, monitoring activities, assisting with medical needs, food deliveries, home security, and so much more, that so called “independence” is supported by tech and know-how. This is inter-dependence in its most beautiful and loving form.

In many ways aging-in-place technology is seamlessly integrated and non-stigmatizing today—in my day I did not have those options. It was just emerging and clunky, difficult to use, and highly stigmatizing to a generation that had not fully embraced it (high barriers to adoption). So, for me, caregiving and aging in place meant hands-on analog labor intensive. Any little potential fires and I had to get off work, drive several hours, take time away from my responsibilities, and do what I THOUIGHT needed to be done.

The older adults in my family had so called “independence” as historically defined by the aging-in-place industry. However the collateral damage was my “independence.” I would do it all over again, but now there is a more efficient and effective way to supplement care of loved ones.

You now have refined aging-in-place technology easily available from places like BestBuy to set your parents up for aging in place success. Which maintains their Inter-dependence and your Independence! READ that again…Analog caregiving is still required, but there is a huge opportunity cost when you are faced with many of the caregiving scenarios that need attention.

Smart technologies for aging in place will be your key to independence. When I think back on all the times I invested in false alarms or easy to solve things, to major emergencies, the right technologies could have made the difference between me being on a wild goose chase or having dinner with my wife on a date night (aka peace of mind).

It’s not an either/or, informal caregiving is an act of love, most of us will be involved in the process—it’s whether you do it smartly with the help of technology, or you don’t.


Aging in place technology is about their (Boomer/Genx) Inter-dependence and Your Independence.


This youthful heart can love youYes and give you what you needI said this youthful heart can love you
Oh and give you what you needBut I’m too old to go chasin’ you aroundWastin’ my precious energy– Tracy Chapman
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