Aging in commune/intentional community

Discussion in 'Communal Living' started by yarrow_sun, Jun 8, 2006.

  1. yarrow_sun

    yarrow_sun Member

    They sound like they would be a lot less stressful than working a full time job, unless it is your passion, commuting to get there, and all the other stuff that goes along with it.

    But how are things like becoming disabled or elderly handled in that type arrangement? What happens when someone develops an illness that requires a lot of medical care- how is the medical care paid for?
    Do people move on to more traditional lifestyles once they reach a certain age?
  2. dilligaf

    dilligaf Banned

    ya know we are in a situation right now with an ol feller and i really hate to say it but the entire commune, hippy,,, blah blah blah yadda yadda REEEEEEEEEreallly gettin on my last nerve and tis a damned good thing i wont speak what i hear of such people n places because i do have a moral or two ,,,,, but i sincerely hope n pray anyone wishin to join such places n folks do so at an age where you can be their lil sheep for several years before you get old n useless n decrepit:rolleyes: ,,, because they sure as hell aint gonna take ya in later on in life.....:mad:
  3. cobcottage

    cobcottage Member

    In response to Yarrow's very intelligent question, one of the draws of joining an intentional community is the buying of health insurance in a large group.

    If you are older or disabled, I heard that "Eden Alternative" was the way to go.

    Has anyone else heard of this? Is it as good as it sounds?
  4. Cryptoman

    Cryptoman Member

    Aging in community isn't any different than aging in life, or at least it shouldn't be. Just because someone is older, it doesn't mean that they lose their usefulness. They may not be able to till five acres, or build a barn but people who are older or disabled have just as much, if not more to contribute than a lot of younger, healthier people.

    Before our society moved into the "age of acqusition" and our focus was on the family and surrounding community, older people played a vital role in keeping the family farm operating. Each generation would pass along the knowledge that they had to the next and teach their children the skills needed to maintain the farm. As the parents grew older, the more laborious work fell to the children, who in turn, had their own children. At this point the grandparents would play a key role in caring for the children, or doing less strenuous tasks that need to be done around the home. You used to see several generations living in the same home at the same time functioning quite well. Now, our society has no use for someone that has outlived their usefulness in the workforce, and we're too shortsighted to see the possible contributions that they may have that lie "outside the box".

    As for developing a serious illness...If you don't believe in alternative medicine, you either go to a community that is run more like a business where they provide insurance, or you die. My personal opinion...death is natural and it's something to look forward to, not something to fear. Not that I'm going to rush off and blow my brains out or anything, but if it's coming for me, I'm not going to avoid it either. I've seen firsthand the "wonders of modern medicine" and I'm not too impressed.

    Anyway, that's my 2 cents.
  5. yarrow_sun

    yarrow_sun Member

    I get what you're saying Crypto, but what I really meant in my question was aged or disabled at that point where people can no longer care for themselves, much less others, but may live for several more years.
    As far as alternative medicine, there are a lot of things that can't be fixed with it, but can with conventional medicine. Many people would prefer to have surgery for something easily treated, like appendicitis, rather than accepting the appendix rupture and the resultant eventual death.
    Going without health insurance is fine for young people, the healthy, and the wealthy.
  6. dilligaf

    dilligaf Banned

    isnt that where alot of our nation heres homelssness ? tween the elderly with no one n nothing n vietnam vets... makes up alot of our involuntary homelessness...this is the second person in less than a year we here have dealt with and it aint easy n we aint a commune

    but where does the line get drawn..... between weigh station for those moving on down the road or those moving on to death..... where does one draw the line between communal/ hippies n plain old compassion for the human race n letting folks die where they truly wish to die....n with the type of people they want to be with in there final days / years......,,, like i have said before ,, ol fellar here has attempted to get himself nito a communal type situation n cant,,, hasnt been accepted nnn dang nabbit he is worth having around here helpin out n puttering about,,, (even though over the last couple years he has gottan quite crotchety n angry.... n poor ol fellar dont wanna kick the bucket here,,, he just needed folks to look after his little truck n junk so he can go home to the netherlands..... a trip we dont really believe he will return from.....
  7. NaykidApe

    NaykidApe Bomb the Ban

    Good point Crypto, and the inevitability of death certainly isn't a legitamate reason for comprimising one's life.

    I got a lesson last year from my friends 90yr old grandfather. I went with my friend to visit the old guy in the hospital after he'd had, yet another, age related accident.

    At one point my friend went to get coffee and I was alone with the semi-consious old man who suddenly came to and looked right at me (one more inccident of waking up in a strange room and staring into a strange face I'm sure) and whispered, "For god's sake, let me die".

    This poor guy had lived his life and was ready to go on to whatever comes next.

    Suddenly the idea of depriving someone of their dignity in exchange for a few more years that he didn't even want seemed pretty ludicrise.
  8. Cryptoman

    Cryptoman Member

    I get what you're saying Crypto, but what I really meant in my question was aged or disabled at that point where people can no longer care for themselves, much less others, but may live for several more years.

    Yarrow, you raised a really good question. I look to the model of yesteryear. I know things then weren't idyllic then, but some things seemed to work pretty well. Even when grandma and grandpa were too old to care for themselves, they were still part of the family and loved and treated with respect. Now grandma and grandpa are looked at as burdens to be dealt with, or obstacles to be overcome. We're not trying to create a community, but more of an extended family of people working together for a common purpose. In our ideal community, those people would be cared for as family. As Dili was saying though, that's not the typical way things are done. A lot of communities are more like mini corporations that value you as a commodity.

    As far as alternative medicine, there are a lot of things that can't be fixed with it, but can with conventional medicine. Many people would prefer to have surgery for something easily treated, like appendicitis, rather than accepting the appendix rupture and the resultant eventual death.
    Going without health insurance is fine for young people, the healthy, and the wealthy.

    I'm fortunate that we're all healthy, and my wife is a Reiki master. Any community that we form in the future will be predominantly focused on alternative healing, but I will agree that there will be times that traditional medicine will have an answer that alternative medicine doesn't.

    We've been looking at buying a hundred acre tract of land in British Columbia. One of the reasons for this was the national health care, and the low cost of medication. If you can't find a community that offers healthcare here in the states, you'll probably have to foot the bill on your own. In a medical emergency, any emergency room in the country has to treat you. If you are unable to pay and are of low enough income, most of those hospitals have (or had) programs that help pay the bill. In some cases, the bill can be sent to DFS or the equivalent state agency, and they will take care of it for you. It's not something that you would be able to do regularly, and it's not a solution for something like a terminal illness, but it could be an option in some cases. It does make you think though, what did we ever do before health insurance???
  9. oldwolf

    oldwolf Waysharing-not moderating Super Moderator

    So many things have been complicated in this co-dependent/greed centered reality so many call life.
    It ain't
    Life is living and dying - accepting all
    not avoiding and denying
    But each draws to each that which they need to learn - so for those who try to prolong life - well go for it - may you be happy.

  10. tuatara

    tuatara Lifetime Supporter Lifetime Supporter

    we have a good system here for the aged and invalids ..doctors and hospitals are free ,,,and if you are invalidated you can get home care ..whether you are old or young ..home care costs a percentage of what you earn other words if you don't earn anything you don't pay anything ....a friend has 40 hours of home care a week and a nurse drops in twice a week ,,his total cost?? $11.25 a month...and other countries try to put down our medical health system ??
  11. radishacorn

    radishacorn Member

    I live in an fec community, one of many income sharing communes in north america. Our community has its own business and provides for the health care of its members out of pocket. Catastrophic events over a certain amount get paid for by our big umbrella, which is called peach.
    We don't look at people as commodity, and we actively seek all ages of members to join our community. Of course a thriving, viable society has all ages of folks in it.
    To learn more about the fec go to
  12. dilligaf

    dilligaf Banned

    Radish,, thats great! complete healthcare for members,,,, what is being failed to be mentioned here is that becoming a member at most places as an older adult is all but impossible,,,, and therein lies the problem,,,,,

    tis fine n dandy if someone is 68 n been living at a community for 18 years n gets ill n needs care,,, but what happens to the older generation trying to find a home for themself and NOONE will accept them???? .... period!!! Even before they are ill n need care,,,, one after the other will give the same story,,,, "they say i am too old and wont be able to pull my load before its my time"...

    Its poppycock plain n simple even in VA....

    i dont get it really....all the propaganda , beatin round the bush n BS rather than stating things plain n simple and as they truly are...
  13. oldwolf

    oldwolf Waysharing-not moderating Super Moderator

    sheeit -gonna hafta open my big mouth and be a target for ya.

    Complete health care, you co-dependent dipshits, never did exist, and what we got now is the almighty god doctor system.
    Any one who's been through the medical wringer will tell you they would have been better off without it.
    We just get to stop taking care of ourselves and make it the system's responsibility - poppycock !
    No offense intended, but we do not offer any kind of medical care - when our time comes why fight it - meanwhile we take care of ourselves and even for this we hafta get all kinds of legal documants to get the establishment to keep their fucking mitts to themselves

    I think any one looking for staying in the mainstream with all the "benefits" does not belong in any community that's going for alternative ways of living.
    I know if someone came asking if we would take care of them - I sure would know where they were coming from now would I not ? Any who trust in their own Self and willing and open, can find the belonging within, and are more than welcome.

    Being an "older" myself - I know that you only get out what you put in - garbage in - garbage out.
    Disease is simply your body rebelling at what you are feeding it - check you pulse on following your vision and if you don't have one - well no wonder you feel some dis-ease. Those who follow after their dreams, full of fire, are Doing - and because of that - though it's a good day to live - it's a good day to die too, because we Are Doing that which feeds us and being true to Self.

    Lord knows complete medical care is a real misnomer - ask the sick.
    They'll tell you about the medications that they cannot afford making them sicker.

    Ah well, some have found a way to keep themselves whole and healthy without any medical care - and do not want it - thank you anyway !

    Have a great one

    Blessings along the Way - the lessons we learn by.
  14. e-mail me here about BC, if you would. I plan on going up to BC in August for about 3 weeks to investigate similar possibilities.
  15. twofeathers

    twofeathers Member

    any disabled veitnam vet even if he didn't get hurt in the nam, is elgible for a monthly check now, upwards of 1200. dollars, so if they tell you they can't get anything, they are lieing about being elgible for service at a vet facility. and are problaly dishonorably discharged or never went. i see that quite often when dealing with vets on the streets. the ones who bragged the most never were vets to begin with, just an excuse to get noticed. mike


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