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To wonder when old age starts

(93 Posts)
granniechrissie Sun 09-Feb-20 23:49:40

I (aged 61) recently met up with my cousin (aged 70), I asked him what he was doing these days and he said that he was doing voluntary work helping the aged. My mum (88) is still pretty active, so when does old age start?

SueDonim Mon 10-Feb-20 20:07:18

It’s been reported this week that people are at their happiest at the age of 82 so that’s a reason to keep going! David Hockney is 82 and is embarking on a new venture so he obviously doesn’t think he is old.

I do agree that our state of health is a major player and if we are weighed down with health issues then that ages us. I saw that for myself when my mum had a hip replacement at the age of about 80. The relief from the intense pain she had been suffering meant she looked ten years younger afterwards! She’s still battering on in her own home, at the age of 92, although has slowed a bit in the past year or two. My sister died last year at only 72 and that was a heavy blow to us all.

It was a bit of a shock to me recently when I realised my Dh, in his mid-70’s, is now the oldest person in our street! shock The properly-old people all died last year so he, a mere whippersnapper, has had to step up in their place. No one keeps an eye on us though - we’re just the folks who take in the Amazon parcels for everyone! grin

The hospital where my dd is training doesn’t accept patients on the geriatric wards until they are at least 85yo and even then, if you’re otherwise healthy and with-it, you’ll be put on a ‘normal’ ward, so I guess that is a cheering measure of age, too.

Bluebird64 Mon 10-Feb-20 20:35:15

Well I've just read about a new book, 'The Changing Mind' by Prof. Daniel Levitin, which is coming out towards the end of the month. He has studied ageing brains for decades and has found that in lots of ways we get BETTER at things as we get older. But our cultural prejudice against age makes us think the opposite. I'm going to read it!

Ellie Anne Mon 10-Feb-20 20:55:41

I am in my 70th year but am definitely not old. I have two lovely friends who are 5 years older and they seem like a different generation. Yes I have aches and pains and the reflection in the mirror is not what I’d like it to be but I’m Young in my head.

Blencathra Tue 11-Feb-20 06:28:28

I think it is generally 10 years older than your actual age.

Hetty58 Tue 11-Feb-20 06:55:47

That's true Blencathra. As a child, I thought anyone over 30 was old. I really hated turning 50, though, as I felt it suddenly put me in another phase of life, one I certainly wasn't 'ready' for.

A work colleague seemed to have been born 'old' though. Her opinions, attitudes and approach to life were always very 'elderly'!

threexnanny Tue 11-Feb-20 13:21:55

My mother seemed to turn into an old lady after her 80th birthday. It seemed like she didn't think there was any point in the daily struggle once into her 9th decade. She had been widowed some years and had health problems but had been determined to soldier on until then.

Rufus2 Tue 11-Feb-20 13:28:26

people are at their happiest at the age of 82

Sue I can't think that far back! grin Only joking! All I can say is that I've been progressively "happiest" as each year rolls by! smile

SueDonim Tue 11-Feb-20 15:18:04

Ah, that’s lovely to hear, Rufus2! smile

Anniel Tue 11-Feb-20 21:14:51

I will be 86 in June and computer technology is one of my favourite interests. I have a cleaner 3 hours a week and still travel lomg haul. I have loads of serious health conditions but take my medication as directed. I am really interested in world politics and just want to keep living to see what happens next! I have been widowed for 11 plus years and miss my DH daily. I just wish I had more friends but we worked overseas for the years when we may have made friends, but I do have three children across the world so I guess I am lucky. I cannot believe I have lived for so long but I am really pleased to have lived a long life My poor sister died the day before her 90th birthday. I was so upset for her and for me!
It’s a lovely day tomorrow!

M0nica Tue 11-Feb-20 22:03:03

I think we need to divide who we are from how we feel.

However, I feel and I have always felt the same, I do not feel old. The fact is I am 76 and therefore I am old and life is a lot easier when I just accept that and then just go on feeling as I do.

Greeneyedgirl Wed 12-Feb-20 09:22:04

Finding that I'm agreeing again MOnica. What goes on in our heads, our "personality" if you like and our sense of the world, doesn't change, but it is an inescapable fact that our body ages, and it is out of our control.

Denying/ignoring old age makes not a jot of difference. Some are luckier than others, and inherit good genes, and some choose to live a healthier life style, BUT we all die in the end. It's not gloomy it's just a fact, so live each day........

cas58 Thu 13-Feb-20 17:47:40

I'm 62 next week and I'm 'older' not old.

MamaCaz Thu 13-Feb-20 18:58:47

I'm not even 60 yet, but for me, old age began yesterday afternoon, when a workman talked to me in a way (both words and intonation) that made me feel about 100.

The trouble is, he was so obviously a really nice, well-intentioned guy, so what could I do except let it go?

Jaffacake2 Thu 13-Feb-20 21:15:07

I am going against the general view and say I feel old at 63. Mentally and physically feel drained and unsure where I am in my life. My roles as carer for children,parents and all the people I nursed in the NHS for 40 years have gone. No sooner had I retired then I was very ill needing resuscitation and now have ongoing autoimmune disease.
Yep I feel old.

MissAdventure Thu 13-Feb-20 21:19:12

I think it starts when it feels like it, mostly regardless of efforts to try and hold it back.

Mimidl Sat 15-Feb-20 15:04:53

My Mil and my father are the same age. My dad still works 3 days a week and although he has illnesses he just gets on with it, never complaining.
My MIL won't go anywhere on her own and constantly worries that she has additional illnesses. She sits at home and imagines that a cough is the Coronavirus or a rash is cancer.
Age is definitely in the mind in my opinion. I know I definitely feel far older than my years daily!!! 😁

newnanny Sat 15-Feb-20 15:49:24

Inside I feel young and only on days when back pain is evident I feel older. My MiL used to work in a care jome for elderly. She was còok for about 40 yearsveven working Xmas day so they did not have to gave a previously cooked warmed up dinner. She finally retired aged 73 and older than a few of the elderly clients as she calls them. It made us chuckle.