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Golden Heart Transition

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© 2024

Golden Heart Transition

Where Are All the Men?

Recently, I had just finished making my midnight rounds at the hospice center where I’m a CNA (Certified Nurse Aide) and was sitting down to document all the “cares” my fellow aides and I had done to support our patients that night. The nightly cares usually include helping them get ready for bed, turning them from side to side to avoid pressure sores, and cleaning them when they are incontinent. As I was pulling up each patient’s chart to capture all that we had done, it suddenly hit me… where are all the men?

The hospice center where I work is a small facility as most hospice centers are. In-patient capacity in these centers, at least in the Denver metro area, maxes out at around 24. That night was an average night for us where we were watching over and caring for 12 patients. In a world equally divided between men & women, it seemed that we should have had 5 or 6 men in our care. But that particular night… we only had 2.

That realization made me stop and reflect back over the past year. I could hardly remember when we had 4 male patients at one time, and I could not remember any time when we had 5 or 6. And the times when we had 4 male patients was only on a few occasions and only for short periods of time. On average, I realized we usually had no more than 2 or 3 male patients at a time, and the rest… 9, 10 or more were women.

Why?, I wondered. Why are 75-85% of our residential patients women? When I reflected on my home hospice work, the gender demographics were much more equally distributed. When called to help in the field, I was just as likely, and sometimes more likely, to visit a male patient as a female one.

And that’s when the probable answer hit me… the men most often have support at home for their end of life, usually under the loving care of their wife or partner. But women most often have less support at home because their husbands have died before them or are unable to care for them. So, their end of life is more likely to be in a facility… a nursing home, memory care center or an in-patient hospice like where I work.

It was clear… one partner, usually the man, was able to benefit from a family caregiver in the comfort of his own home; whereas, the other partner was far less likely to receive the same benefit. Only if she was lucky enough to have children, particularly daughters, willing to put in the long hours of 24/7 caregiving that a terminally ill person needs… or if she had substantial financial resources to hire private care… was she able to stay in her own home or the home of one of her children.

Wow!!! This was eye-opening for me and something everyone should consider… regardless of gender. Because even if you are the husband or partner who statistically might be the first to die, it is absolutely critical to help your wife/partner start planning now for their end of life. Supporting them in these discussions, particularly considering their wishes and who will support them when you’re gone, is one of the most loving and gracious things you can do for them.

And if you are the wife/partner who may be alone after caring for your loved one… or if you are a child of elderly parents… don’t wait! Get together now to plan with your partner (or parents), especially if adult children live more than 50 miles away or for whatever reason are unable to care for an aging elder. It’s time to have honest, open conversations and plan together.

Most of us believe our spouse will take care of us and knows everything we need. But sadly only half of us get to experience that outcome. Regardless of which spouse it is, it is 100% guaranteed that one of you will be cared for by someone else.

So, I encourage you to create a plan, or road map, as I, and many others, have done. This road map will act as a beacon for you and your caregivers when your sunset time comes. Don’t wait! Talking together about end of life, planning for your care, and documenting your wishes in a holistic way will create a vision that brings peace of mind for all… when, not if, that plan needs to be put into action!

To get your planning off the ground, I offer two great online group options for you to choose!

  • To lift your plans fully off the ground where everything will be in full flight, consider joining the nearly 2 dozen others I’ve worked with who have raved about the “Best 3 Months” holistic planning program.

“Exceptional”, “Impactful”, “A Gift”, “Empowering” are just some of the superlatives given for this amazing 7-week journey where you’ll explore 5 critical domains of life… physical, mental, emotional, spiritual and practical… while imagining you only have 3 months to live.

The bargain price for this incredible program is $350. That’s 10.5 hours of phenomenal information on what end of life looks like, how you can prepare yourself and your loved ones emotionally for your death, what your options are for after death care, and the list goes on.

By the end of this course, you will be amazed at your transformation and comfort-level in talking with your loved ones about death. And you’ll find answers to crucial questions such as:

  • What matters most to me?
    • What can’t I live without?
    • Where will I die?
    • Who will help me fulfill my vision?
    • How can I experience more peace and joy when it’s time to leave everyone and everything I love behind?

Upcoming Best 3 Months Dates:

  • Mondays, February 6th – March 20th @ 6:00 – 7:30p MT
  • Saturdays, February 11th – March 25th @ 10:30 – Noon MT
  • For those that are not quite ready to take full flight, another great option is one that allows us to go in more depth on the reasons why end of life planning is so very important. If you would like to explore this topic more fully, I recommend signing-up for my free intro course, called “Dying Consciously… Dying Wisely”.  This course answers these 3 big questions:
    • What is a conscious and a wise death?
    • How can a more conscious and wise death help us experience more peace and joy when it’s time to leave everyone and everything we love behind?

Upcoming Dying Consciously…Dying Wisely Dates:

  • Wednesday, February 1st 6:00p – 7:30p MT
  • Saturday, February 4th 10:30a – Noon MT
  • Tuesday, February 7th 6:00p – 7:30p MT

To reserve your seat for one, or both, of these great options, visit www.GoldenHeartTransition.com/classes.

For those who prefer to meet privately for one-on-one coaching support, I offer an initial 45-minute private consultation, either online or in-person, for free! And from there, we would design a custom package just for your or  your loved one’s needs. Email me at [email protected] to schedule this now.

Don’t wait to start planning! Your and your loved ones’ peace of mind is on the other end of “Yes!”.

Gratefully yours in love & light, Karen 💛

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Karen Keeran
GHT President & Founder

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