As part of a school project on personal involvement, twin sisters in 10th grade met with a seventy-seven-year-old woman and kept her company for several meetings. The project ended long ago, but by the time it was over, the connection between the twins and the elderly woman had become so strong that they kept visiting her regularly.
As the bond grew stronger, they spent more and more time together, eating together and even staying overnight with the woman. The elderly woman said that the girls brought light into her life, and the girls evidently enjoy their connection with the woman.
There is a lot we can learn from this story. Today’s young people have many deficiencies. They feel insecure and do not know how to find their way in life, how to answer their many questions. The elderly, on the other hand, have an abundance of answers and abundance of knowledge, but often, especially the solitary ones, no one with whom they can share it. Their desire to impart knowledge, kind advice, and warmth remains untapped. This is why such a connection between young people who need advice, and older people who have no one to advise, can work so well.
Also, for the elderly woman, connecting with young women energizes her. They make her feel young again. For the girls, it not only increases their confidence and a sense of security, but sometimes fills in for a missing role of a mother or a grandmother.
I think we should learn from this that it is good for young and older people to be together and support each other, especially in families where a structure of several generations being closely connected does not exist. If older women could connect with girls who need a guiding hand, and if older men could connect with boys who need fatherly or grandfatherly advice, everyone would benefit.
Here, I think there should be an organized system that connects elderly men and women on one side, and young boys and girls on the other side. It will do society a world of good. For the elderly, it will give vitality and joy. For the youngsters, it can be a life changing connection, a way out of difficulties and misunderstandings they would not be able to work out on their own.
Therefore, I would recommend that we do it on as broad a scale as possible, for everyone’s benefit.
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