Coping with getting older

Postby BeckyHew » Thu Sep 06, 2007 1:18 pm

Hi everyone,

I am due to turn 30 in about a month, but recently I've been losing confidence in myself. I can see changes happening to my body with regard to ageing and it's making me depressed.

I know this will sound shallow, but I can see my face changing, with more wrinkles and lines. My body is also starting to sag and I am beginning to realise that I can't keep a youthful appearance forever.

This has made me quite depressed and I've begun comparing myself to younger people, wishing I looked more like them. It's crazy because I can't do anything about it! I'm sorry if it sounds trivial.

I just wanted to know if other people feel/have felt this way and how I can deal with it. Does it get easier to deal with as we get older? Does anyone know of any websites etc that help people deal with this kind of issue?

Thanks
BeckyHew
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#1

Postby Adora » Thu Sep 06, 2007 1:57 pm

I found out that denial works quite well for issues you can't help with. Some problems are best ignored.

Personally, I don't even know my age, and I don't even celebrate my birthday. Actually, I am 30 myself, but you haven't heard that from me :P

In conclusion, don't go to a website for people trying to cope with getting old, rather find a site for teenage fashion or something. Well, I am half joking here, but the problem gets really serious when you are aged 60-70 and everybody starts dieing around you. This is why you should make friends with many people 10-20 years younger.
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#2

Postby dkvv » Thu Sep 06, 2007 2:07 pm

True with old age people grow old and one day they die.
Do you fear death?
Do you have a family?
In the meantime I suggest you should try skin correction surgery.
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#3

Postby Alexander_1982 » Thu Sep 06, 2007 3:13 pm

dkvv wrote:In the meantime I suggest you should try skin correction surgery.


Quite right, I mean at 30 I'm surprised you haven't already chosen the fabric to line your coffin.

Age, BTW, is a social construction, we humans invented the calendar and the concepts of space/time so really there is no universal quantifier in human biology that proves biological changes happen at certain ages in ALL PEOPLE. We only have rough approximations that always vary from person to person and I believe, at least in part, our ideas about aging and what we expect to happen actually take place not because of biological determinism but because of the IDEAS propagated by our culture. Like the above poster I don't celebrate birthdays either and actually have to think to remember 'how old' I am when somebody asks. Just for the record I'm 25 earth years old and still get asked for ID when I drink in pubs. It's all in the attitude and if you dwell on 'being old' unfortunately my friend you will manifest that which you focus on. Come back when your 85 then we'll talk about being 'old'.
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#4

Postby mintola » Thu Sep 06, 2007 3:31 pm

I never got over hitting 30, (I'm 48 now) and I realised recently that I have spent too many years worrying and agonising and being miserable about what is, after all, the inevitable.

Don't waste another second. I know that's easier said than done, but really it's like worrying about the weather - utterly pointless - and such a waste of your precious (young) life.

Minty xx
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#5

Postby gomen » Thu Sep 06, 2007 9:03 pm

hi becky,

on the surface, it seems like most of your concerns are cosmetic. whether or not these are merely masking a more profound insecurity, im not sure. but let's stick to the physical aspects.

for one, i think you will feel better about the whole process if you feel you have more control over processes associated with aging: weight gain, sagging, illness, inactivity...do you take care of diet and exercise? and for example, scientists are starting to discover that a lot of what we call 'aging' is preventable, and is caused by abuse of the human body. one example is discoveries about caloric restriction. it is extending lifespan and improving health in numerous organisms. im not saying this is the fountaing of youth, but reading such things makes you realize how much control you have over aging. i do think that aging is largely a self fulfilling prophecy. you expect to fall apart, and so you do things that help you to fall apart as expected.

on another level, a lot of the depression associated to aging has to do with the negative meaning we attach to aging. i think this is true of many western cultures. we associate aging with disease, weakness, death, uselessness. now who on earth could feel good about aging if that is what you focus on! yet it is important to realize that there are cultures where older people are well respected - even in these modern days. in such cultures, older people live longer and are happier/healthier, their wisdom (which only comes with age) is valued. just knowing these cultures exist show that WE are the ones that collectively attach a negative meaning to ageing and create our own dread and misery. one culture that comes to mind is the Okinawans of Japan.
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#6

Postby Adama » Fri Sep 07, 2007 12:12 am

Age, BTW, is a social construction


Its also a biological phenomonen, and quite a bit of evidence that it is partially a defence against cancer. As people age dna damage builds up, if you had the quickly replicating body of a younger animal with dna damage you'd get cancer really fast.

not because of biological determinism but because of the IDEAS propagated by our culture.


Animals with absolutely no 'cultures' age and die, the idea that our ideas effect whether or not we will age is ridiculous, sorry, biological determinism. having good thoughts can help you live longer, but theres this thing called evolution you're ignoring.
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#7

Postby jurplesman » Fri Sep 07, 2007 3:23 am

I am quite a few years ahead of you all. I believe the idea of ageing causing depression, may be the other way around, namely becoming depressed and blame the ageing body for this. People who enjoy their lives and are busy doing the living have very little time thinking about ageing or death for that matter.

There is probably a physiological process going on that prevents the proper production of feel good neurotransmitters such as serotonin.

Please check yourself with the Nutrition Behavior Inventory Test (NBI). If you score high it may be nutritional.
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#8

Postby __Tigger__ » Fri Sep 07, 2007 3:43 am

I believe the idea of ageing causing depression, may be the other way around.


So... depression causes aging. And if depression is a nutritional order then we can infer that aging is a nutritional disorder :wink:
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#9

Postby jurplesman » Fri Sep 07, 2007 4:02 am

__Tigger__ wrote:So... depression causes aging. And if depression is a nutritional order then we can infer that aging is a nutritional disorder :wink:


I don't understand the logic of this.
Ageing can cause depression, because it can slow down the production of neurotransmitters.

But if you get the depressed at the age of 30 about ageing, then it is more than likely that you may be suffering from depression because of underlying metabolic disorder. it is an hypothesis that needs to be investigated.
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#10

Postby __Tigger__ » Fri Sep 07, 2007 4:22 am

*sigh* it was a joke... please don't take it seriously or take offense ok?
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#11

Postby jurplesman » Fri Sep 07, 2007 4:41 am

__Tigger__ wrote:*sigh* it was a joke... please don't take it seriously or take offense ok?


Sorry, I took it so seriously. :lol:
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#12

Postby eyebrows » Fri Sep 07, 2007 5:27 am

Yes, things changed as I got older but, I kid you not, I looked better in my late 30's than I did at 30. I also started working out more eating right but mostly I grew into my face in a better way. I'm in my midforties now and still look darn good - would look much better if I hadn't ruined my eyebrows and my sanity by getting BDD and depression.


Check out how current your look is for you- hair, make-up, clothes. Are you keeping your teeth white? Little things can make you feel dowdy and older or keep your youthful look.
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#13

Postby BeckyHew » Fri Sep 07, 2007 8:02 am

Thanks for all you replies.

DKVV - I don't think I fear death, I am intruiged by it more than anything. I often wonder about any afterlife there may be. I have a family, but I am the youngest.

Alexander - I think that is true to a certain extent. People who think "I'm to old to do that" often end up not having as much fun and become "old before their time" - pottering around and not taking risks. However, it is true that animals age without any social pressures.

Mintola - thanks for the advice. You are right. I just worry that I won't be attractive to my partner anymore.

Gomen - that's great advice. I only do a small amount of exercise. You are right in that if I look after myself, my body will feel and look better regardless of age. I think my concerns are mainly cosmetic, which does show insecurity on my part. Our culture attaches so much importance to looking young and beautiful, it's hard not to feel worthless if you are ugly and old. I guess I should be looking more inside myself and valuing what's there.

Jurplesman - thanks, I'll take the test.

Eyebrows - thanks for the great advice. Changing little things will give me more confidence so I can face the world! I appreciate it :)
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#14

Postby Alexander_1982 » Fri Sep 07, 2007 8:57 am

Adama wrote:
Age, BTW, is a social construction


Its also a biological phenomonen, and quite a bit of evidence that it is partially a defence against cancer. As people age dna damage builds up, if you had the quickly replicating body of a younger animal with dna damage you'd get cancer really fast.

not because of biological determinism but because of the IDEAS propagated by our culture.


Animals with absolutely no 'cultures' age and die, the idea that our ideas effect whether or not we will age is ridiculous, sorry, biological determinism. having good thoughts can help you live longer, but theres this thing called evolution you're ignoring.


Congratulations for editing what I actually said into dogmatic statement and scoring a few easy points for yourself, we should all bow down to your superior intellect. You'd have to be a complete spanner to believe biology has nothing to do with age, the point is however culture and society do play a part with regards attitude, role and physical signs, and of course the people who retire and drop dead not long after.
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