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Why Can’t Old Ladies Wear Pretty Bras? The Surprising Indications of Aging Stress

“Let’s go to Victoria’s Secret.  I need a pushup bra. Everybody has one, and besides, I’m tired of not having a bust.”

Sound like a twenty-something talking to her friends?  Try a ninety-something talking to our nurse!

My first reaction to this request was to hope and pray that I’m the lady requesting a Victoria’s Secret trip when I’m ninety something.  I want to be just like my resident characters who bring me inspiration and joy. My next thought was for the salesperson. It’s not every day Victoria’s Secret salespeople assist a woman in her nineties.  

I think there’s something to learn from my Victoria’s Secret friend about helping our elderly loved ones.  Of course we don’t often hear of women in their nineties worried about pretty underwear. Why? Because as we age, extras like beautiful undergarments take second place to the main priority of accomplishing the “basics”.  My friend was no different than most other people who come to us for help. Her children had been struggling to make sure she had everything she needs: hearing aids, steady shoes, a cane, three nutritious meals every day. Who had time for indulgences?  

Now that she is adjusted and happy in her assisted living environment, with her cute apartment, good food, friends, and opportunities to be active, she and her family are at peace.  Without the worry of who is cooking the next meal, who is keeping track of blood pressure, or how she’s going to get to her doctor’s appointment, this lady is free to be herself. That just happens to include the need for a “bust”!  

Your loved one may not be the Victoria’s Secret type, but my guess is there’s something she’d like to do, some “extra” she’s given up in order to prioritize her more basic needs.  Sometimes its a Bible study group, a favorite craft, or a Bunco game, but so many residents who come to us have long since given up their superfluous desires. What if assisted living could give your loved one her “secret” back?  What if having the help you need taking care of the basics gives you and your mom the peace of mind to be able to laugh again and the breathing room to afford to consider enjoying something extra?  

Not only residents, but stressed out caregivers do the same elimination of extra pleasures in favor of what they must do for their loved ones.  From dream trips to Europe to simple date nights at a local burger joint, we’ve seen family members get to experience life’s extras again once their parent is well cared for with us.  Assisted living at St. Francis Villa means better quality of life, and not just for residents but for all of us who have the privilege of caring for those residents and for the families who receive a much needed source of support.  What’s our secret? Our secret is giving you back your “secret’!

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