Boomers Heading toward "senior" status?
Posted December 21, 2009
Now that the Boomers are reaching "elder" status and qualify for those dreadful "senior" discounts, what will happen to their upbeat, youthful approach to life? Will anything change?
According to Robert Schwalbe, author of Sexy, Sixty and Successful: A Guide for the Aging Male Baby Boomer, hitting 60 and commencing the seventh decade of life is difficult because men confront the undeniable fact that their bodies are changing—usually sagging. Hot young women aren't even giving them a first look, much less a second look. Suddenly, those Viagara and Cialis ads sound pretty darned interesting.
In his review of the book for Newsday, Peter King wrote, "The book helps the generation that four decades ago was singing The Who’s ‘I hope I die before I get old' come to terms with getting, if not old, at least older.”
Women appear to be experiencing the same challenges. Oh, decisions, decisions. Advertising for Botox, a cosmetic surgeon on every other corner, and more and more anti-aging lotions and potions on pharmacy, supermarket, and every other retail outlets' shelves—what's a girl to do?
Denial or Just Nostalgic?
Is it that we are in a state of denial that we are closer to the end of the journey than the beginning? Or, is it that we are (at least in our own hearts and heads) still somewhere between Elvis Presley and the Rolling Stones? We continue to fill the concert venues whenever one of our favorite, albeit a bit wrinkled, rock groups come to town. We look at the now-collectible 1960s Mustangs and Camaros with fond memories and a yearning for what once was (or never was).
In his book, Schwalbe, who is 64 himself, advises 60+ Boomers to "adjust their expectations and accept their limitations. It’s great to stay active. But don’t try to exercise like you did when you were younger. There’s no way to keep up with someone 20 years younger." Have you ever tried to convince a Boomer of something as drastic as the idea that they "can't do what they used to?" Speaking from experience, it's not an easy task.
Old and Experienced or Young and Idealistic?
With youth comes the idealism that can change the very core of society—just look at what happened in the late 1960s and 1970s. With age comes more memories, more stories and more wisdom. Plus (at least until the last year or so), more disposable income to enjoy the fun things in life.
But while we're enjoying those fun things and imparting our wisdom upon the youth of today, we also have to contend with increasing health issues, and that dreadful concept of mortality. Yes, my friends, even Boomers are mere mortals—we won't live forever. Is there any reason to continue to act as if we will?
Linda Thompson is the author of Every Generation Needs a New Revolution, How Six Generations Across Nine Decades can Find Harmony and Peaceful Coexistence, Planning for Tomorrow, Your Passport to a Confident Future, a common sense approach to life planning; and A Caregiver’s Journey, You Are Not Alone, a survival guide for working caregivers. To find out more about Linda’s presentations, workshops and publications, visit LifePathSolutions.biz.