Conversations with Carmen

February 21, 2020: Can We Do Better? Part 2 – How to Get Real
Guest: Sonya Barsness, Gerontologist

Starting with “Something is better than nothing” is backwards. We have to start with the person and with real. Rather than starting with what people can’t have, i.e. “We can’t have a real baby 24/7,” start with SHE LOVES BABIES. Leaders in the culture change movement have cautioned, “What is lacking is real life. Real life is not found in programs. Real life is in the give and take of everyday life,” and that our goal should be “rampant normalcy.” Hear how real life leads to less depression, less need for medications, fewer falls and great quality of life. Think through how to become facilitators of real life. Consider the gamut of possibilities from disingenuous to authentic. Do you offer true choice or just token choice causing elders to “settle,” and think, “Well, it’s better than nothing?”