.comment-link {margin-left:.6em;}

Money

The www.FedPrimeRate.com Personal Finance Blog and Magazine

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Does Aging Affect Financial Prudence?

During a recent phone conversation with my mother, I realized something that I apparently had been oblivious to – she really is getting older. My mother is swiftly approaching 70 years old, but is just as lively and sassy as ever. Now that I am a wife and mother, too, we talk all the time, and I lose sight of our age difference because our relationship has expanded into a genuine friendship. She will never be my peer, but she is timeless to me now.

Well, she was until she told me that somehow, while paying her monthly bills, she had miscalculated something somewhere and her bank account was slightly overdrawn.

My mom, who has always been a shrewd money manager, doesn’t go through these kinds of things. She harshly scolded me in my early twenties as I discovered the joys of the VISA check card and the pains of overspending because I had swiped my card too carelessly. Growing up, she always had bank books full of deposit and withdrawal notations – I thought that she was an accountant!

Simply put, my mom doesn’t ever, ever overspend. EVER.

So, when she told me that she had made this kind of error, it was a little rattling. What really made my heart sink was that she was so upset about it. It wasn’t because she was worried about money; she has good credit and still works, so she simply planned to charge her purchases to her VISA until her next payday. No problem. My mother’s worry was that she might be falling into the same kind of diminished financial prudence that many seniors her age experience.

Financial Advisor Magazine reports that “More than 14% of Americans—5.4 million senior men and women—have some form of dementia or Alzheimer’s disease by age 70, according to a 2007 NIH study,” and that “The AARP says that half a million folks 50 years of age or older already need assistance with their finances.” I’m sure that many of my mother’s friends need assistance in managing their finances due to diminished capacity. It’s easy, however, to dissociate yourself from others who need help with something when you are so good at it. Now, the queen o’ the balanced checkbook had fallen from her throne. I’m sure it was quite unsettling, and I hurried to assure her that everyone makes mistakes sometimes, so that she wouldn’t continue to worry.

I really do believe that this snafu was a one-time mishap for her. I may just be a loyal daughter. But it would be wise for both of us to remain open to the idea that my mother may not be the invincible Superwoman after all.

Labels: , , ,


--> SITEMAP <--

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home





FedPrimeRate.com
Entire website copyright © 2017 FedPrimeRate.comSM


This website is neither affiliated nor associated with The United States Federal Reserve in any way.
Information in this website is provided for educational purposes only. The owners of this website
make no warranties with respect to any and all content contained within this website. Consult a
financial professional before making important decisions related to any investment or loan
product, including, but not limited to, business loans, personal loans, education loans, first
or second mortgages, credit cards, car loans or any type of insurance.