All Press Releases for July 16, 2021

Assisted Living: What You Need To Know Before You Make A Decision - Where Will I Be Safe Is The First Question To Ask Says Frances Fuller, Award Winning Author Of 'Helping Yourself Grow Old'

Multi-award winning author Frances Fuller offers a unique outlook on aging based on her own experience. Her insights are penetrating and deal with issues that many seniors and their families are concerned about.

    WILMINGTON, NC, July 16, 2021 /24-7PressRelease/ -- It goes without saying that personal safety is an important consideration for everyone. Being in a safe environment is especially important for senior citizens. Seniors must deal with issues that are not terribly concerning for many of us, such as experiencing a fall and having no one to help them or making mental mistakes that can cause one to feel vulnerable.

As medical science advances and life spans become longer, many of us may someday face decisions regarding assisted living. Sadly, regardless of the amount of diligent research we might do, slick corporate advertising and hearsay advice aside, none of us will ever know what it is really like to live in an assisted living facility until we actually get there. That's a bit scary, as that decision is often final. Unfortunately it's not been possible to get an unbiased, factual and objective glimpse into the day to day experiences of life in an assisted living facility - until now.

Frances Fuller, award winning author of 'Helping Yourself Grow Old' and 'In Borrowed Houses', can now provide us with penetrating insight into life in an assisted living facility, drawn from personal experience. Her goal is not to make specific recommendations or weigh the pros and cons of such a life changing decision, but rather to draw our attention to lesser known considerations that may have escaped our notice at first.

In a piece published on her website, entitled "The First Question", Fuller relates a compelling and dramatic story that drives home the need for seniors to plan ahead for the unexpected while admitting the emotional cost that may be involved.

"The obvious first question that must be asked when we are facing the question of where to live when we are old is simple: Where will I be safe?

"I have known that for a long time. But a few days ago something happened, something that I'm going to have to tell you. There is no way around it.

"I fainted.

"For days I had been experiencing crazy moments when I felt the blood running out of my head and the darkness closing in. It happened many times, usually when I was physically at rest, working at my computer, once when I was reading from the small screen on my phone. I strongly suspected a reaction to the blue light of my screens and made adjustments; I wore my special glasses and spent less time writing.

"Then one morning when I felt especially unstable no matter what I did, the threat of passing out seemed so likely that I retrieved my call button from my bedside table and hung it around my neck before sitting down in my recliner.

"So that's where I was. I did not, could not, fall. I woke again with my arms on the arms of the chair, jerking and trembling.

"Not immediately able to get in touch with reality, I wondered if I had fallen asleep and had a bad dream, then remembered that I had known I was going to pass out. I fumbled for that call button. Two nurses came, then the chief nurse who made the decision that I should go to the hospital and let experts figure out what happened and why. While she was still squatting at my knee the fire department EMT's appeared at my door.

"The purpose of this tale is not to talk about my problem. The heart monitor I am wearing now for a whole month will surely reveal something. Meanwhile I am good and expecting to be better.
"I would much rather tell you about Margy. . ."

The full piece is available at her site at

There are many great books on aging available. However, many of them were written from an academic point of view. Most are penned by sociologists, doctors, gerontologists, even the CEO of AARP, and one by a Catholic nun, Joan Chittister. Chittister's book, 'The Gift of Years' is beautifully written, focusing on spiritual values and finding meaning in life. Chittister admits in the preface that she was only 70, which is the front edge of aging, and her book is somewhat abstract.

Atul Gawande's book, 'On Being Mortal', relates medicine and old age, It enjoys high Amazon rankings, in the category of "the sociology of aging." It contains a great deal of valuable scientific information and shows understanding of the physical and emotional needs of the elderly.

Frances Fuller's book, 'Helping Yourself Grow Old, Things I Said To Myself When I Was Almost Ninety', is an up-close and very personal encounter with aging. It is an uncontrived and firsthand look at her own daily experiences: wrestling with physical limitations, grief, loneliness, fears, and the decisions she has made about how to cope with these and keep becoming a better person. She faces regrets and the need to forgive herself and others and is determined to live in a way that blesses her children and grandchildren.

Frances deals with many common, universal but sometimes private issues in an open, conversational tone. Her confessions and decisions invite self-searching and discussion. She tries to make sense of her own past and to understand her responsibility to younger generations. In the process she shares her daily life, enriched with memories from her fascinating experiences. Her stories and her voice — fresh, honest, irresistible — keep the reader eager for more. The end result is a book that helps create a detailed map through the challenging terrain of old age.

The result of this intimate narrative is that readers laugh, cry and identify with her mistakes and problems. Reviewers have called the book, "unique," "honest," "witty," "poignant," "challenging" and "life-changing."

For these reasons it is a book unlike any other book on aging you will ever read. The book can serve as a primer on what lies in store for all of us, from someone who is working through many of these issues. While the book is a perfect fit for book clubs, there are many other individuals and groups who could benefit from the information and ideas in the book:

Those approaching retirement
People who are currently retired
Children of aging parents
Those who have lost a spouse
Retirement community discussion groups
Life coaches
Church groups (men and women)

and a host of others. For group discussions, Fuller has made a set of discussion questions available at her website at

Readers have lavished praise on the new book. One Amazon review stated, "I find myself thinking,'I need to read this again and take notes!' It's full of wisdom, humor, and grace. I also have committed to rereading it annually - it's that important!" Another said, "There is valuable life experience in this book. Helping Yourself Grow Old is truly is a book for all ages, and one not to be missed." Another stated, "Beautifully written book telling timeless truths, for both the old and the young. Highly recommend this book for anyone who loves to laugh, cry, and learn wisdom from someone who has lived so much life."

Frances' prior work, 'In Borrowed Houses', has taken three industry awards. Frances Fuller was the Grand Prize winner in the 2015 '50 Great Writers You Should Be Reading' Book Awards. It received the bronze medal for memoir in the Illumination Book Awards in 2014. Northern California Publishers and Authors annually gives awards for literature produced by residents of the area. In 2015 'In Borrowed Houses' received two prizes: Best Non-fiction and Best Cover.

Critics have also praised 'In Borrowed Houses.' A judge in the 22nd Annual Writer's Digest Self-Published Book Awards called 'In Borrowed Houses' " . . a well written book full of compassion . . . a captivating story . . . ". Another reviewer described the book as "Wise, honest, sensitive, funny, heart-wrenching . . .". Colin Chapman, lecturer in Islamic Studies at the Near East School of Theology in Beirut said, " . . . western Christians and Middle Eastern Christians need to read this story…full of remarkable perceptiveness and genuine hope."

Frances has shared stories about her life in an interview with Women Over 70, and a recording is available on their Facebook page.

Frances Fuller is available for media interviews and can be reached using the information below or by email at [email protected]. The full text of her latest article is available at her website. Fuller's book is available at Amazon and other book retailers. A free ebook sample from 'In Borrowed Houses' is available at Frances Fuller also blogs on other issues relating to the Middle East on her website at

About Frances Fuller:

Frances Fuller spent thirty years in the violent Middle East and for twenty-four of those years was the director of a Christian publishing program with offices in Lebanon. While leading the development of spiritual books in the Arabic language, she survived long years of civil war and invasions.

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Contact Information

Frances Fuller
Frances Fuller
Wilmington, NC
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