The decision to stop driving or ask a loved one to stop driving can be an extremely difficult one. Most people wish to continue to drive for as long as possible, because losing one's ability to drive translates as losing one's connectedness and independence. However, subtle changes in physical and mental abilities are not noticed by the individual or loved ones over a period of time, and some people drive long after they should limit or stop driving, either temporarily or permanently depending on the individual.
The AARP article We Need to Talk: The Difficult Driving Conversation addresses this difficult decision, by providing warning signs that indicate when someone should limit or stop driving.
AARP also provides the "We Need to Talk" online seminar developed by The Hartford and the MIT AgeLab, that helps drivers and their loved ones to recognize warning signs. It also helps families initiate productive and caring conversations with older adults about driving safety.
- Module 1: The Meaning of Driving - addresses what driving means to older adults and the emotions involved with having to give it up.
- Module 2: Observing Driving Skills - assists you in learning to observe skills objectively and talk about alternatives to driving.
- Module 3: Planning Conversations - discusses how to have "the talk" and identify alternative transportation to help a loved one stay connected and remain independent.
AARP was founded in 1958 and has over 38 million members. It is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization for people over the age of 50. AARP is well-known for its advocacy efforts, providing its members with important information, products and services that enhance quality of life as they age. They also promote community service and keep members and the public informed on issues relating to the over 50 age group.