Ageism, as we see it in the media, is common. Most commercials are about young people having fun, partying, enjoying each other. Commercials about older people depict things about how to keep your dentures in, reverse mortgages and health care.

Bring out moves like ‘Grumpy Old Men’ and see how these stereotypes affect old people. Research has found that portraying old people as bitter and cantankerous can have an adverse affect on them. The American Psychological Association Journal found older adults are negatively affected in situations that remind them of, and reinforce, negative age stereotypes.

However, the biggest problem with ageism is the internet. The media called ‘Facebook”. It is dominated by our youth, a lot of whom, have no use for older people and there is no filter. They can post or say anything and do not have to prove it. The only thing they have to worry about is their conscience. My family has personally been attacked on the internet (Facebook) by younger people suggesting I am old, don’t know what I am doing, etc. I suggested at one time to a young woman 40 plus that closing STC Transit System was a bad idea and that older people without cars could not get to doctors, etc., that there were other solutions that could have been thought about. Her response was, “Why should I care about some old guy that is going to die shortly anyway when it can save the taxpayer from further support of losing money.”

I am sure all of us that are getting older have been snubbed or rejected because we are old. I talk about it quite frequently with younger people and some are great. Others not so. I have had young people argue with me and suggest that I should just retire and get out of the way. I have had others suggest that they can learn a lot from older people. I said to my son awhile back, “How much further ahead would you be if you had listened to me when you were younger.” His reply, “A lot.”

Mature adults have a lot to give and a lot of wisdom that can be helpful to our younger generation. Be proud of yourself and your age! Stand up and be counted!

I read an article the other day on the internet titled Between 65 and Death, author unknown. Points 5, 6 and 7 said:

  1. Don’t stress over the little things. You’ve already overcome so much in your life. You have good memories and bad ones, but the important thing is the present. Don’t let the past drag you down and don’t let the future frighten you. Feel good in the now. Small issues will soon be forgotten.
  2. Regardless of age, always keep love alive. Love your partner, love life, love your family, love your neighbour and remember: “A  man is not old as long as he has intelligence and affection.”
  3. Be proud, both inside and out. Don’t stop going to your hair salon or barber, do your nails, go to the dermatologist and the dentist, keep your perfumes and creams well stocked. When you are well-maintained on the outside, it seeps in making you feel proud and strong.

© John Knight – All rights reserved.