Moms Live Longer When Their Kids Continue to Visit

As a mom, I can say for sure that our kids are a delight in our lives, and while they can’t (and shouldn’t) be a reason to live, they definitely make the tough times bearable (and the good times even better).

Now, there’s science to support the idea that moms who stay close to their kids as they grow tend to live longer overall.

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Researchers at the University of California in San Francisco just concluded a study that followed 1600 adults with an average age of 71. The scientists controlled for socioeconomic status and health and still, loneliness played a large factor in considering mortality rates.

23% of the lonely participants died within 6 years of the study, opposed to only 14% of those reported that they felt satisfied with their level of companionship.

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Barbara Moscowitz, a senior geriatric social worker at Massachusetts General Hospital, thinks she knows why.

“The need we’ve had our entire lives – people who know us, value us, who bring us joy – that never goes away.”

The older we get, the more value we tend to place on the close relationships in our lives, and with a lifetime of opportunity to hone relationship skills, older people are just better at it, too, says professor of human development Rosemary Blieszner.

“They’re pretty tolerant of friends’ imperfections and idiosyncrasies, more than young adults.

You bring a lot more experience to your friendships when you’re older.

You know what’s worth fighting about and not worth fighting about.”

The need for connection should not only encourage us to remember to invite grandma along to family events, but to change the way we think about assisted or independent living environments – instead of being the sad state of affairs many of us assume, it can actually be a way for seniors to mingle and connect, to make friends (or more) with others their age.

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And remember, there’s something maintaining those relationships for you, too – in exchange for your time and companionship, you get stories, histories, cookies, and all the hugs you could want.

Have you ever felt that this is true? Let us know your experience in the comments!

Thanks, fam!