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Are We Getting Less Interested in Social Connection as We Get Older?

Social Connection is Shrinking for Boomers According to This Study | NextTribe

We pride ourselves on our social connection and being bold, active, and involved. So why does a new study out of the Stanford Center on Longevity say that Baby Boomers—especially those between the ages of 55 and 64—are less engaged than those who were the same age 20 years ago?

The data says that today’s midlifers are 5.11 percent less social than their predecessors…and that has researchers wondering why. The research tracked nine kinds of social engagement, with some of those being contact with family and friends, interaction with neighbors, and participating in community and church programs.

The team at Stanford has some theories: Maybe Boomers are too busy with work or caring for family members. Or suggests Dr. Tamara Sims, a research scientist at Stanford, “They may be engaging in virtual ways not captured by the data.”

One other theory: We’re out there socializing in new, in-person ways that the research isn’t attuned to. Who knows, maybe instead of church and community get-togethers, we’re Zumba-ing or book-clubbing our way to plenty of social connection.

Janet Siroto

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