I recently reported the Danish retirement home, Thorupgaarden, allows pornographic movies on Saturday night and even prostitutes on occasion. These have proven to have a calming effect on seniors more powerful than Prozac. So how did readers react to this news?
From RS in Winnipeg, “I’ve always wanted to find a nursing home that allowed cocktails, never mind the pornographic videos and prostitutes. I agree that seniors should be allowed more than just pulling up the covers at bedtime. Bravo to you for writing about the need for sexual satisfaction for us elders.”
From Vancouver, “Great article in 24 hours. I work with a geriatric population and am tempted to put it up on the bulletin board. Now I know where I’ll go when my time comes, with a Merlot in hand.”
NM, a reader of the Edmonton Sun, says, “People in nursing homes are isolated and deprived of touch that we all need for our well-being. It’s time we stopped looking at seniors as dirty old men and women when they desire some affection. Your article is timely.”
A 92-year-old responds with this remark, “I want to salute you and send my 1000 percent agreement with your article in the Thunder Bay Chronicle Herald.”
Another 89-year-old just says, “Bang on for the column.”
From DJ, “Your article in the Times Colonist is brilliant and totally refreshing. It’s good not to hear the usual pap. Thank you.”
A reader in Saskatoon says, “This article was both interesting and entertaining and one I’m going to take along when I meet for coffee with my lady friends. It’s good to know I’m normal and not a dirty old woman.”
CD remarks, “I could not agree more with your thinking, your clear, enlightening and convincing commonsense arguments while at the same time imparting an appropriate degree of compassion. It is refreshing to read an author who is courageous enough to challenge conventional wisdom and tackle controversial topics. I have been meaning for some time to tell you how much I enjoy your article in the London Free Press.”
From Calgary PB writes, “What a refreshing look at ageing and sex. My wife and I were both widowed too early and still have an active sex life, travel a lot and visit our children around the world. Not sure what the kids think, but no doubt think we’re old fogies who just pull up the covers, but who cares? Thorupgaarden sounds like a great place when seniors retire and should be a model for other countries. We don’t want to be thumbs down on sex.”
From the Telegraph Journal in St. Johns Newfoundland, HF writes, “I believe we should take this holistic approach to seniors. It is too bad that we have so many prudes in Canada and the U.S. that would go into hysterics if politicians here would bring in legislation to set up such a facility here. It will never happen, but we can dream.”
GT, a reader of the Toronto Sun says, “ Yes, by all means let’s accept the Danish solution to sex in senior homes. No one in these facilities should have to snoop around looking for a willing sexual partner. The Danish approach appears to be more sensible than over-drugging seniors that so often happens today in these facilities. We no doubt spend millions on this medication when a little sex would also be a cost effective measure. Your common sense, not sitting-on-the-fence approach is worth the subscription to the newspaper. I like your style”
Did I receive any criticism? Yes, but only a minority labeled me as morally corrupt and irresponsible for even suggesting the establishment of a Thorupgaarden in this country.
The overall message, and I received a ton of it, revealed that many seniors are merely looking for the loving touch of friend or family. An overriding theme of loneliness and depression accompanied these responses along with a big thank you for writing about it.
For those who missed the column you can read it on my web site at www.docgiff.com. For comments, firstname.lastname@example.org.