Greetings fellow GSA Members -- I´m Sheri Doyle, communicating from Mexico. I´ve joined Open Forum as one of the site´s volunteer discussion facilitators. So, let´s get started!
One of my pet peeves is that it appears to be socially acceptable to call attention to a child´s apparent age such as to say “how are you doing today, young man?!” but politically incorrect to call an older adult “old” such as through saying “how are you doing today, old man?!”. A young person may be recognized as young but very few oldsters are in favor of being associated with a later-age-stage qualifier. While some individuals find being called an “older adult” acceptable - others lean towards an absence of any qualifier. There are times however when age-categorization is necessary or socio-culturally apropos.
I´ll present my point – why do so many adults reject/deny or attempt to conceal their chronological age and try to appear younger to society at large? I´m well aware that mass communications, America´s youth culture and other factors often portray aging adults negatively… When portrayed positively, older adults are often depicted less than accurately.
While continuing to support the eradication of ageism – shouldn´t professionals involved in gerontology also consider implementing an “Oldster Pride” movement?! It could take into account each aging adult´s interests, limitations and lot in life so that no subgroup of individuals would have cause to feel excluded. Based on a successful aging platform; the movement would celebrate the strengths of its membership in realization of their personal challenges. Taking pride in one´s advancing years could thus instill a new paradigm.
Your commentaries are welcomed, Sheri