Gransnet forums

Ask a gran

Confused 😐 why do people always think 💭 I am as old as them

(114 Posts)
NanaDH Sat 05-Sep-20 19:03:29

I am 61. I have very white grey hair ( Not dyed), since I was about 30. This problem has been on going since then but with the introduction of masks it is becoming a daily occurrence. Today was the worst, an older lady whom I was serving at work in the supermarket, said “of course you would remember that during the war, we got use to food shortages”! Last week I popped in to see if my daughter in law was back at work. The lady I spoke to told DIL “ an old lady came in to see you today”!! GS 12; when he realised it was me thought that was hilarious. I am the all modern, up and going NANA with 2 children, 6 grandchildren. What should I do or say when this happens? Any one liners? Welcome. ( that won’t get me the sack) Thank you 🙏

phoenix Sat 05-Sep-20 19:10:41

Oh NanaDH, you have my sympathy!

The lady of the house where we rent the premises where I work (hope this makes sense?) will often say to me "phoenix, of course you will understand, that at our age...."

She's 89, I'm 62!

're reading that, it hasn't come across quite right confused.......

BlueSky Sat 05-Sep-20 19:22:27

You made me laugh! When I was still in work a male colleague about 10/15 years older than myself mentioned the war. I replied before my time! He apologised profusely saying he wasn't thinking straight that day. But it did knock my confindence!

phoenix Sat 05-Sep-20 19:34:34

NanaDH perhaps you could say "I think you are confusing me with an old(er) person?"

silverlining48 Sat 05-Sep-20 19:43:06

Oh dear nanadh I do understand, to remember food shortages someone would need to be at least 95. grin.

I have been mistaken as grandmother of my first baby. Twice. By two different (very short sighted ) women on two different occasions. Once i had even washed my hair and put a bit of makeup on! What a beautiful grandchild she said. The other said something about me being a proud gran. I was 26.

Another time in M&S with a friend (who was a little older than me,) an assistant said how nice my ‘daughter’ looked in the jacket she was trying. My daughter? I shrieked!

Yet a couple of years ago I was asking about a flu jab and the pharmacist would not believe I was old enough to have one. I was 70. It made my day, he didn’t need glasses! But many others do.

Sorry I don’t have any one liners but will watch this post in case a good one comes along.

Kate1949 Sat 05-Sep-20 19:45:23

When I was working and complaining about my job at work, a man said 'You needn't worry, you'll be retiring soon'. I was 45!

NanaDH Sat 05-Sep-20 20:30:29

I. Am so glad I am not the only one 🥺like your response Phoenix I could use that one maybe? Blue sky yours I think I could get away with. I did have a young colleague who thought I was in my 30 s That did make my day😊 Do any of you think; like me older people Do not believe they are As OLD As they are?

annsixty Sat 05-Sep-20 20:48:05

Silverlining
How very dare you😏
I was born 2 years before the 2nd World War started so I remember food shortages very well.
When I reach 95 I will check back to see if I still remember those days!!🤔🤔😌

Callistemon Sat 05-Sep-20 20:49:59

My MIL always referred to my mother as being the same generation as her own mother!
It drove my mother mad as there was only 5 years between them. Incidentally, my ma still had dark hair but my MIL had white hair.

varian Sat 05-Sep-20 20:51:14

I suppose you could experiment by colouring your hair to see if it makes any difference.

Callistemon Sat 05-Sep-20 20:51:57

Oh dear nanadh I do understand, to remember food shortages someone would need to be at least 95

No! Not at all. I remember rationing, it went on until 1953.
I don't have a grey hair (well, maybe one or two but not many).

Glorybee Sat 05-Sep-20 20:58:45

You could say, ‘I don’t think I look too bad for 103!’

NanaDH Sat 05-Sep-20 21:13:00

Glorybee, like the age reference that would work well. Thank you

Luckygirl Sat 05-Sep-20 21:42:46

I have the opposite problem! My hair is long and dark brown - no grey. I am 71. And I also have few wrinkles (sorry folks) - a doctor friend of mine thinks I have some syndrome (EDS) that means my skin does not wrinkle as much as most. I have a lot of the other symptoms too.

I had to take a prescription to the chemist the other day and I happened to have my hair in plaits that day which is not suitable for a pensioner at all! - the lady behind the counter took a lot of convincing that I really was the person on the prescription.

I am hoping that eventually my hair will turn white as my grandmother's did.

jenpax Sun 06-Sep-20 08:31:19

I have had this too on many occasions some people are just idiots!. It always upsets me though I know it shouldn’t! I try to look as nice as I can for my 56 years but to be mistaken for someone in their 70’s is not great for the ego💁‍♀️

Georgesgran Sun 06-Sep-20 08:38:45

I have a very dear friend who hasn’t aged well (sorry Caron).
When a chap knocked at the door to see her - he asked her husband if his Mam was in!!!

Maggiemaybe Sun 06-Sep-20 08:53:23

You’ve a very apt username, Luckygirl! smile. I’m off to google EDS now and am prepared to be very, very jealous.

Maggiemaybe Sun 06-Sep-20 09:12:02

Ah no, I’m not. sad I’m sorry for being so flippant, Luckygirl, I really hadn’t realised that EDS was such a complicated syndrome. I do hope you don’t suffer from the other symptoms it can cause.

Calendargirl Sun 06-Sep-20 09:13:20

I worked with a woman with the same surname as me, but no relation, on a bank counter. She was about 12 years younger than me, a lovely lass, but a bit ‘blowsy’ and very matey with the male customers. I suppose I came across as more stand offish!

One day, a chap stood in front of us, looked at our name plates, and said “Are you mother and daughter?”

. “Just how old do you think I am?’ I hissed.

My colleague was delighted, I was livid, the bloke was embarrassed.

🤬

MawB2 Sun 06-Sep-20 09:27:46

I was being served in M&S the other year and the assistant looked to be (at least) in her 50’s. Commenting on different branches I said how I didn’t like driving to a particular store despite its reputation for being a better one. I didn’t want to admit it was because it was in a rough (almost industrial estate) area, but instead said it was because I found the dual carriageways and huge roundabouts confusing. “Oh but you are good, to be still driving” she said “my mum has had to give up now”
I wondered to myself how old she thought I was and resolved to wear more lippy in future. hmm

Cabbie21 Sun 06-Sep-20 09:31:42

I don’t know why shop assistants and others feel the need to make assumptions - and voice them - about age or relationships, especially when they are so often wrong.
Unless it is to offer a concession.
Nobody questions my status now as a senior citizen, but in my first teaching job back in 1968 I was travelling home one day on the same bus as many pupils. So embarrassed, and flattered, when the conductor asked me if I wanted half fare!

MellowYellow Sun 06-Sep-20 10:36:52

I started going properly 'grey' in my 40's but as it became such a lovely white colour which suited my complexion I decided to stick with it and put up with looking at least 10 years older than my friends. It does take thick skin though, and I remember being delighted when I got my bus pass because I felt I had finally got to an age which suited my hair!

Kate1949 Sun 06-Sep-20 10:41:12

A few years ago, I had had a very difficult time after suffering alopecia totalis. My confidence was non-existent. I had at last had a hair system fitted and was feeling so much better.
I went out with my sister who is 9 years younger than me. We met a woman she knew who said 'Oh hello S.. I haven't seen you for ages.' Then, looking at me said ,' This must be your mum'. angry Why assume? Back down went my confidence.

Hetty58 Sun 06-Sep-20 10:41:39

NanaDH, you're 61, so of course you're 'old' to a younger person. Why is that a problem?

'Old' is not bad - so why such negativity?

As for grey hair, well, a lot of young women are choosing to have their hair dyed silver right now!

geekesse Sun 06-Sep-20 11:05:40

It can go the other way. Someone asked me yesterday where my children went to school. I don’t look younger than my years, so I’m assuming the person who asked either can’t work out the maths or doesn’t know about female biology.