Re: What should I be worried about?
From: Patricia Lautner (
Date: Wed, 18 Jun 2014 12:08:06 -0700 (PDT)
I had to laugh at RPD's post about meal preparation because my advise to
you is the opposite! (See how different our communities are from each

I strongly advise that you set a mandatory meal policy before move in. I
like one that says, "participation is mandatory, eating is not."  When you
go to the conferences and talk to folks, you may learn that the communities
who have such a policy seem to have better social relationships as a group
then communities whose meal programs are less developed.  This is important
because, after a strong social bond has been established, making difficult
decisions, getting work done, and even addressing conflicts, can be
easier.  After 9 years of living in cohousing I'm convinced that there is
no better way to consistently be social with the community then the common

At JPCohousing, we have struggled for 9 years to get a good meal system
going and we're far from successful (but getting there.)  As one of the
founding members of our community, not putting in place a strong mandatory
meal program is one of my biggest regrets.

Patti Lautner

On Wed, Jun 18, 2014 at 2:31 PM, R Philip Dowds <rpdowds [at]> 

> Many or most cohos allow for occasional or variable participation in meals
> programs — with the general understanding that the more often you eat, the
> more often you cook.  Some individuals are quite active in community life,
> but just don’t like the common meals.  Some cohos report drifting away from
> the huge (noisy and chaotic?) 40-person dinners, to more intimate sub-group
> meal events of around a dozen people.  I think I’d be slow to make communal
> dining any more of a mandatory pre-requisite than communal bathing.
> On Jun 18, 2014, at 1:37 PM, fergyb2 via Cohousing-L <
> cohousing-l [at]> wrote:
> >        I would add to that get agreement that all adults will
> participate in your meal program before you move in.  It's too hard to get
> a functioning meal program set up later ...
> _________________________________________________________________
> Cohousing-L mailing list -- Unsubscribe, archives and other info at:

Results generated by Tiger Technologies Web hosting using MHonArc.