Book Review
From: Charles R. Durrett (
Date: Wed, 21 Dec 2005 12:09:00 -0800 (PST)
Dear Cohousing L,
I don¹t know why but David Wann¹s new book reminded me to announce our new
book Senior Cohousing:  A Community Approach to Independent Living ­ The
Handbook on the ²L².    Especially because someone just told me while in
D.C. last week that it really is the excellent gift for parents for the
coming holidays.  People said that they were relieved to imagine that they
might not have to be the sole source of their parents¹ emotional well being
later in life.  I wrote the book for a couple of reasons. As I traveled
around looking for assisted care for my mother, I found that even the best
facilities were seriously lacking the interpersonal relationships that make
life worth living. On the other side of the ocean, in contrast, I saw
seniors in Senior Cohousing enjoying every day with their neighbors. I had
to communicate what I saw so that others could consider this very supportive
housing arrangement.
The Secret to Senior Quality of Life
I also wrote Senior Cohousing: A Community Approach to Independent Living,
The Handbook to answer all the questions I was getting from so many people
around the world. I wrote it to answer all the questions I had asked myself
about senior cohousing.   I wrote it because I felt I had discovered an
exciting quality-of-life secret that had to be shared. That secret is the
physically, emotionally, and spiritually healthy life of the people I met
while visiting senior cohousing communities in Europe. I haven¹t seen so
many people have so much fun since I lived in a college dorm.
Laughter vs Tears
The advantages of cohousing are not unlike small-town village and community
living. Senior Cohousing  is about people arranging neighborhoods in a way
that makes it possible for them to live more economically, more practically,
more independently, and in a more social setting. I have visited many
American senior assisted-living settings. The contrast of those environments
with senior cohousing is akin to the difference between laughter and tears.
Only Seniors ?!?!
And for those of you who would want to question (judge) whether only senior
communities is a good idea or not ­ well, imagine that it¹s up to the
seniors themselves. Sometimes people ask, ³Doesn¹t that defeat the
intergenerational aspects?²  The key ³aspect² is that people decide for
themselves what is right for them.  And considering that 4 out of the last 5
cohousing communities in Europe have been for seniors only, people are
deciding for themselves.  Read the book to find out why.
Not Just for Seniors
This book is also for younger people working with their parents to come up
with alternatives to traditional retirement homes for their parent¹s
retirement years. It is for younger adults thinking about their own future
retirement needs in the same way they now plan their retirement finances.
Also a perfect holiday gift.  See the attached book review.


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