The Golden Girls Revisited
In tribute to the recent passing of Bea Arthur, star of the TV sitcom The Golden Girls, I wanted to share the growing phenomenon of “Golden Girls” inspired homes — women connecting with other women to share a home and “age in community.”
I first noticed this phenomena doing research in the mid-1990s, but over the past couple of years have witnessed a marked increase with articles appearing in the New York Times, AARP Magazine and Smart Money , as well as new websites dedicated to helping women find housemates .
This “alternative housing” will become increasingly mainstream as Boomer women grow older. Why? First, Boomer women are the first generation en mass to live with other non-related people, and for most of us, it was a great experience! Second, many Boomer women are currently single, and a significant number, one out of five, do not have children, so a roommate provides companionship as well as peace of mind that “someone will be there for me.” Third, women typically have less retirement income and savings, and live longer than men – making the financial arrangement of living together attractive, especially given current economic realities.