This post is part of the Gorgeous 50’s series inspired by a book given to me by one of my sisters on my 50th birthday – ‘Grown up and Gorgeous in your 50’s’ by Pamela Robson. I will be sharing some of Pamela’s words and my own thoughts along the way. To see all posts published as part of this series, go here.
It’s up to you. Ignore those people who airily tell you that you should embrace old age and, worse still, those who would rather you slid off quietly into a corner and didn’t make a fuss. As long as we live in an ageist world in which women are judged by how old they are and look, and at a time when we have to earn a quid well into our 60s, we can and should say and do anything we deem necessary. When women lie about their age, it’s often because they want the world to see that they are still a valuable member of the community and that they count for something. Do remember, however, that 50 isn’t what it used to be. Afterall, Madonna is 50.
Well first of all, Madonna is now 60 and will turn 61 on 16 August 2019! Keep up with the times Pamela! 😂
I’ve never lied about my age. There’s no point. I know I couldn’t pass for 35 which is the age I keep thinking I am … till I pass a mirror, get a fright, and remember I’m not! Remember this old saying …
A proper lady never reveals her age
I call BS on that! However, I can understand though that there might be occasion when lying about your age might help you access something or be more readily accepted into something, or perhaps even be helpful when it comes to getting a job. But … you’ll be found out eventually and anyway … society needs to come around to the fact that we ALL age eventually and it doesn’t make us any less a person!
In my mind, we should be proud of our age, we should be respected based on our age, and we should be revered for the experience and wisdom we can share and offer. There are two major things that stand in the way:
- Declining Body Image Self Confidence
What is Ageism?
… from the World Health Organisation …
Ageism is the stereotyping, prejudice, and discrimination against people on the basis of their age. Ageism is widespread and an insidious practice which has harmful effects on the health of older adults. For older people, ageism is an everyday challenge. Overlooked for employment, restricted from social services and stereotyped in the media, ageism marginalises and excludes older people in their communities.
Ageism is everywhere, yet it is the most socially “normalised” of any prejudice, and is not widely countered – like racism or sexism. These attitudes lead to the marginalisation of older people within our communities and have negative impacts on their health and well-being.
Why do we have declining Body Image Self Confidence as we age?
Society revels in youth. Youth sells. Youth is sexy. Youth is rejoiced! Even our skin care products are telling us that it is desirable to look younger with all their anti-aging products. Yes we do want to look after our skin and have it healthy and looking nice but it is the subtle messaging that can come from these things that is the problem.
We start to believe that looking older is a negative thing!
Just look at the rise in cosmetic surgery! There needs to be a societal shift! Mature faces should be rejoiced! Mature faces and bodies are sexy too. In fact, I think sexier! Mature faces and bodies can sell products also. Want to know why? Because ‘HELLO’ the world is full of us … and we want to see products worn and used and sold by people like us, not just on ‘youth’! Just like the fashion industry needs to sell clothes for all shapes, sizes and ages … the same could be said for all other products and services.
My final thoughts:
When you can be authentic and proud of who you are, there is beauty and power in that!
I intend on being loud and proud about my age. I turn 55 this year. Yes, it still shocks me sometimes because as I said earlier, I think of myself as 35! But, I’m grateful I’m still here! Not everyone is so lucky.
Do you ever lie about your age? If so, what are the main situations in which you do? Do you ‘feel’ ageism? How’s your body image self confidence?
Ciao for now,
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Leanne of Deep Fried Fruit
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Spot on with your final thought Min – ‘When you can be authentic and proud of who you are, there is beauty and power in that!’ I will be 62 in August and no, I don’t feel that age I still think I’m in my 30s. However, I don’t hide the fact but am proud that at 62 I can still run half marathons and am active and healthier than someone half my age. Yes, ageism exists but only if you allow it to. #lovin’lifelinky
You most certainly are fitter and healthier than many people half your age! And very motivated! Funny how many of us still feel like we’re in our 30’s LOL Have a great day Sue xo
I am actually 35 but nope, have never lied about my age and hopefully, never will. I guess currently, I look young for my age and hopefully if my mum is anything to go by, that kinda runs in the family. I don’t agree in not saying your age – I find that silly. If I get to live to 50, I’m sure I’ll proudly be able to state my age.
I’m with you, Sue! I have nothing to hide and I reckon I’m only getting better with time too!
Sue, Sanch or Min? LOL xoxo
I was actually 35 too once and it doesn’t feel like it was that long ago! *sigh* lol Time flies! I don’t see any point in lying about our age either. I’m sure you’ll live a long way past 50 Sanch!! xo
Hi Min – I can’t think of a situation where I had to lie about my age. We all have the choice to look at our age number and celebrate life to the fullest or let it be a barrier. I have several amazing role models who are in their 80s and 90s in my social circle. They’ve taught me not to think of age but do have a fabulous birthday celebration every year 🙂 #lovin’lifelinky
I agree Natalie. There’s that saying “you’re only as old as you feel”. I feel around 35! 🙂 xo
I actually lie up. I usually tell people I’m 107. That said, I’ve accepted I’m ‘old’ but that’s because I go to things where I am literally the oldest person there. So no one would believe otherwise. I’m ok with it. I just wish other old people wouldn’t act as old. The problem with being 50 is 50 year olds don’t want to do anything fun. Sure dinner, or drinks but that’s it. All the crazy fun is too hard – too something? I find it envigorating. #Lovinglifelinky
LOL – that made me giggle that you lie up and say you’re 107! It’s true there are some young 50 something’s and there are some old 50 something’s. I guess fun can mean different things to different folks. Fun could mean extreme sports, dancing at clubs, going to musicals, dinner out with friends, parties, travel, karaoke, lots of things really. I’m wondering what your crazy fun is? 😉
I’ve never lied about my age though a friend tried to convince me to do so last year when I (briefly) joined online dating sites.
It’s something I’d never dream of doing, however… in retrospect I did notice a lot of men have expectations re women of certain ages. It’s weird for me because I don’t have kids (and only tried to get pregnant in my early – mid 40s) so the idea of grandkids etc is foreign to me. So, in many ways I feel a lot younger than I am and probably act it – in terms of responsibilities etc… I was going to say I’m not a typical 51yr old, but then again, there’s probably no such thing!
You’re right, I don’t think there is a typical 51 year old. Everyone is so different. I’d be interested to hear your thoughts on what expectations men have of women of certain ages, eg the 50’s? Do you mean they make certain assumptions … sweeping generalisations etc? I can’t recall any situation where I’ve lied about my age. The only possibility could’ve been when I was young and wanting to get into a club. It’s possible I said I was 18 when I wasn’t quite there yet, but then again, probably not because I would’ve had to show ID! 🙂
I can never remember exactly how old I am most of the time Min – I feel like I’m younger than my actual age most of the time, but at other times I really like being older and wiser and allowed to live life on my own terms. Now I’m past 55 it’s also weird to think that I’m heading into “late 50’s” and then 60 will be here before I know it. The blessing with blogging is seeing women like Sue rocking the whole 60’s gig and knowing it’s not the end of the book – just another chapter opening up before me!
I know what you mean Leanne. As I’ve said, I think of myself as around 35 but then there are days that I feel every bit of my age and then some! I’m enjoying the last days of my EARLY 50’s as it wont be long and I’ll officially hit MID 50’s. Time seems to speed up the older you get. Sue is pretty incredible at rocking the 60’s. I’ll never be as fit as she is though but I try and keep healthy. I agree that each decade is a new chapter with new learnings and opportunities!
I don’t often tell people how old I am, but I usually don’t lie about it (except when there’s a cut off point in applying for something and I’m a couple of years over, then I’ll shave a few years off lol)!
I don’t generally go around telling people how old I am either Di … but for the purposes of this post I thought it might be a good idea! 🙂
Ha, I have never lied about my age but I can get a bit ahead of myself with how old I am. You see my husband was born in the same year as I, but at the beginning of the year, and I am at the end of the year so as soon as he has a birthday I am mentally preparing for mine…as he turned 70 I am ‘getting a bit freaky’ about this one!!
But why lie? I cannot lie at all.
I sometimes get ahead of myself too. For example already thinking of myself as 55 when I still have at least 4 good weeks of 54 left yet! lol xo
Last year I kept telling people I was 52 … and then realising actually I was 51!!! Brain fart!!! I say age with pride!
I’m clinging to my 54 for another 4 weeks at least! I agree – we should be proud and grateful for our age. xo