From the January 2007 issue of Boomer Market Advisor • Subscribe!

Out and in need of advice

The MetLife Mature Market Institute and Zogby International found that gay and lesbian baby boomers have more distinct concerns about aging with regard to financial stability, personal support and end-of-life legal issues and are providing care at a higher rate than those in the general population.

"Out and Aging: The MetLife Study of Lesbian and Gay Baby Boomers" is the first national survey of its kind. The study found that one in four respondents said he had provided care for an adult friend or family member in the last six months, compared with one in five in previous general population studies. Seventy-five percent report important connections with "families of choice," close friends who are "like a second or extended family," in addition to close ties with their families of origin. Additional findings include the following:

  • Seventy-four percent said they are afraid of not being able to care for themselves and 56 percent are concerned with being dependent on others.
  • One in five people in the survey says he is unsure of who will take care of him when the need arises, though at least 75 percent expect to be caregivers for someone else.
  • A full 47 percent said they would like their end-of-life care to take place in their current residence with the help of hospice care.
  • Lesbian women are more concerned than gay men about their financial stability as they age and report being less financially prepared for retirement than gay men. Lesbian women are notably less likely to have purchased long term care insurance.
  • Men are more likely than women to be concerned with being alone (43 percent vs. 36 percent), becoming sick or disabled (59 percent vs. 50 percent) and losing the ability to care for themselves (76 percent vs. 68 percent).
  • One-half of all gay and lesbian baby boomers, and women in particular, have yet to complete their will, living will or other similar legal directive.

For the full report, please visit www.metlife.com

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