Sarah, 39 yrs

Apr 14th 2022

“Being old to me means that life is passing you and you can’t keep up with it. It’s kind of like you can’t keep up with technology because it’s faster than you can learn or you can’t keep up with everyday life because you have started to wear down. That’s why I have TikTok, I have no idea how to use it, but I can watch it, so I’m keeping up. I had a patient who was 96 years old and I asked her what her secret was, and she said, 'always keep learning'. This is her advice because she didn’t know much about technology, but she learned how to use a computer at 96 years old.

The current view of aging in our society is very negative, especially towards women. If you age, it’s like 'woah, they aged badly. What did they do?' For men, it’s not as severe. Wrinkles are a sign that you lived your life, that you laughed and had a good time, so why wouldn’t you want to show it off?

In Hollywood, if you’re old, you’re going to be casted in a 'grandma' role more often than not. You’re not going to be casted in younger roles or ones your age because you 'look' old. Hollywood wants 'nice and young', so actresses are going to get plastic surgery to keep these young roles. Then, when we watch TV with these actresses, we’ll think, 'wow, they look so good for their age, I wanna do that too, I want to look young.' Our society really values youthfulness.

I don’t often worry about age-related changes. Sometimes I look in the mirror and will think to myself, 'was that always there?'. I don’t feel old, I don’t really notice it until I look at the calendar or mirror and then I go, 'oh right, I’m getting older'. I’m not scared to age, it’s more about how fast time is going.

I think we need to stop judging and accept that people age. There are ways to take care of yourself, to show your wrinkles and be okay with growing older. My hair has been turning white since I was 18, so it’s not entirely honest to say 'oh look, she’s old because she has white hair'. There has been a lot of progress in body inclusivity, so I think we’re heading in the right direction, but there is a lot we still need to work on.”