Sex happens in memory care communities…so what?

Intimacy in communities catering to memory care residents is a fact of life.  Whether between two residents or a resident and their non-resident significant other, this is a ‘hot’ issue that needs to be acknowledged and discussed.

Does an individual diagnosed with dementia have sufficient capacity to consent to sexual activity?  Should dictating a residents sexual contact- or restriction- be a resident’s rights violation?  Is failing to intervene a slippery slope into abuse or neglect waters?

One way for assisted or residential property managers to protect themselves is to have a legal representative of the resident sign the residency agreement on behalf of the resident. This might help protect against assertions that resident, whether current, new, or transferring in, has the legal capacity to understand and give consent on the residency agreement.

A medical diagnosis should be utilized in a senior living operator’s evaluation of whether a new or transferring memory care resident has the legal capacity to understand and sign the residency agreement.

Certified Senior Care Auditors can spot and stop elder abuse in home and residential communities.  Use one to check on your elderly loved on.  Consider this growing career in long term care for yourself. Get certified at

Bare in mind that there is no known medical methodology that is designed to definitively assess an individual’s legal capacity to enter an agreement.  The legal capacity determination should be made in conjunction with a medical diagnosis and other supporting information, such as the SLUMS Test (Saint Louis University Mental Status Examination).


About Elder Care Advice blog

Get professional elder care giving advice, advocacy, education and tips for those who care for and about the frail elderly at the ElderCareAdvice blog. We are generously sponsored by Most posts are written by Cathleen V. Carr, unless attributed otherwise. We welcome relevant submissions. Submit your article and by-line for publishing consideration (no promises!) to Havi at, our own editor who will ensure submissions are given the best possible treatment and polish before publication, ensuring a professional level of publication. There is a nominal service fee involved ($45). Allow up to 30 days for publishing.
This entry was posted in Advocacy, Alzheimer's Caregiving, Dementia Caregiving, Elder Abuse and Neglect, Elder Care, Elder Law and Finances, Holistic Eldercare, Nursing Home & Assisted Living, Professional Eldercare, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s