Communal Living, Part Two

Apr 22nd, 2009 | By Dr Jerry D Elrod | Category: Senior Moments Blog

The other day this column proposed the concept of communal living, at least part time, as a second home option for retirees. In discussing the subject further, in our arrangement, further considerations were raised. I share them here.

Communal living requires tolerance. Any two persons, let alone four or more, must begin with a tolerant spirit. Lacking that, it will be a hard go.

Recognizing givens is an important reality. For example, if one couple enjoys late night television, while the other doesn’t, how the household manages that is important. Obviously there are very practical possibilities allowing for both to be allowed their preference.

Having and keeping a sense of humor adds to the pleasure of the experience.

Compatibility is a quality that will have been detected early on. Surprises may require an adjustment or so, but will not likely create major issues . If you have ever traveled together, you will know whether a living arrangement could be a possibility.

There should be caution about expectations. A realistic appraisal of “living together” should be just that: “realistic.”

Finally, as in other contractual arrangements, the parties involved are actually making a commitment, for a set period of time, to be together.  Separation is possible, but because of the implications of all the working parts of such an arrangement, that can create major upheaval for both parties. Do not go into a communal living agreeement unless you are fully committed to see it through.



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