Remember that famous novel, Love in the Time of Cholera? Well, this blog is sort of about the same thing except it’s not necessarily about love and it has nothing to do with Cholera. So, it really isn’t the same story exactly, however, dating is involved which could lead to love. And if love does evolve, we could always change the name to Love During the Time of COVID-19, although that title may not necessarily appeal to a mass audience. Anyway, we digress. Our FirstLantic blog this week is about dating during a pandemic, staying safe while dating, and some tips on how you still might be able to find “the one.” Number 1 – Test the Waters If you are like many people, your first exposure to someone new is through a dating app. Once you actually find someone interesting, the second step is usually to meet face to face. Of course, that’s way more complicated that it used to be. So, you might need to find out the other person’s idea of an appropriate meeting. You can start with a simple question like, “What’s your definition of social distancing” which usually does the trick. Some people think that social distancing is no physical contact on a first date whereas someone else may not want to meet in person at all. Luckily, some dating apps will do the work for you. For example, Bumble now allows its users to add a badge to their profiles that signifies what kind of dates they’re comfortable with: virtual, socially distanced or socially distanced with a mask. Once you have determined what the threshold for a meeting actually is, then you can decide next steps. Number 2 – What to do, what to do? So, if you aren’t ready to meet in person yet, [...]
70% of people turning 65 can expect to use some form of long-term care during their lives. 90% of those who receive long-term care assistance live at home or in a community setting. These stats are pretty sobering and yet most of us are not really prepared to have to pay for outside help for 10 or possibly 20 years during retirement. In fact, many people believe assisted living is covered by Medicare. 57% of people surveyed said they plan to rely on Medicare to help pay for any senior care they might need. However, while Medicare is available to help with short-term personal health coverage or pharmaceuticals, it is not available to pay for assisted living in most cases. And Medicaid is only available to those who have depleted all of their assets. In that same survey, 61% of respondents thought they would rely on Social Security to cover assisted living or other long-term care costs. The reality is that most social security benefits will not be enough to cover all of the costs especially if you live in a metropolitan area like New York, San Francisco, or Los Angeles. So, how do you pay for home care or an assisted living facility? For many people who have spent their whole lives saving for retirement, long-term care could wipe out their nest egg in a matter of a few years. After all, according to a National Center for Assisted Living report, the median cost for assisted living in the United States is about $4,000 per month or $48,000 annually. If you lived in a facility for five 10 years, that is almost 250k for one person. In addition, there are usually upfront fees required when you move in and additional charges for certain hospitality or care services. Long term care [...]
It wasn’t that long ago that many women found the subject of menopause to be taboo. It was bad enough to deal with the side effects but the stigma of it was almost as difficult to acknowledge. Luckily, society is more open about the topic now which has been a relief for many women who suffered in silence. But, what about “man”opause or andropause which describes age-related changes in male hormone levels? Well, it turns out that although there are significant differences in the way men and women experience the aging process, there are some similarities such as reduced energy, mood swings, lack of sexual drive, insomnia and irritability. However, because these changes happen more gradually for men, they often can be overlooked or ignored completely. FirstLantic explores some of the potential causes and ways to diagnose the exact nature of the problem. Causes of Andropause: A man's testosterone levels decline on average about 1% a year after age 40. However, while testosterone levels lower naturally with age, a more drastic reduction can be caused from diabetes, high blood pressure, lack of exercise or alcohol consumption. The reality is that all men will experience lowering levels of testosterone with age, but it can be more pronounced for some men and lead to some of the side effects that we mentioned earlier. There is also the psychological impact of growing older. Men may start to feel less virile or attractive or they may be concerned about professional milestones that were missed which can lead to depression and in turn can trigger andropause. Many men also have a hard time asking for help as they age because it makes them feel less in control. These feeling are not unusual but for some people it becomes almost paralyzing. Diagnosis and Treatment: If you [...]
Loneliness has become an epidemic with more than three in five Americans feeling lonely. COVID-19 has certainly not helped. However, there are ways to combat loneliness and some of them are surprisingly high-tech. Here are ten suggestions that can help reduce those feelings of isolation.
We all know that homelessness has become a big problem in the U.S. On any given night, over half a million people are homeless. Approximately 65 percent are found in shelters, and the other 35 percent—just under 200,000—are found unsheltered on the streets. But you may not know that a large percentage of the homeless are actually working families with children. Family homelessness has become chronic, accounting for 37% of the overall homeless population and 50% of the sheltered population. Growing up as a homeless child leaves you with a lot of uncertainties and even more questions – how long can we stay at this shelter, what school will I be attending next month, will I have enough to eat today? In our blog this week, FirstLantic profiles one mother that was determined to find a way to provide her daughters with some semblance of stability. In the process, she not only helped her own children but hundreds of others as well. Giselle Burgess and her family ended up homeless in 2017 after their rental home was sold. She could not find affordable housing and was forced to move into a shelter where she and her five children all lived in one room. At around the same time, the Girl Scouts of Greater New York were trying to find a way to help the homeless population so Burgess volunteered to lead a special chapter for them. Troop 6000 was born. Burgess, who is now employed full-time by the Girl Scouts and is also running for city council in NYC, saw the group as a way to give girls a chance to focus on something besides their living situation. Being part of the troop taught the girls valuable skills and increased their confidence as well. As one mother said, “My daughter used [...]