How Do You Feel About Aging?

I decided a long time ago, I’d try to age gracefully. I think growing up with my grandfather, Henry close by made me very comfortable being around old people and I don’t mind being one of them. Henry was always sort of vital and relevant even if he was wrinkled and I was influenced by this.

Saturn in Libra speaks to aging with grace and I wonder how people feel about this. I know there is a large coalition of people out there who want to fight the effects of age and I understand why. Social pressures and such. Fear of rejection.

I have that too but I address it in other ways. For example, I try not to bitch about or focus on my various aches and pains. If all you do is complain about your back pain or other ailments, no one is going to want to be around you.

I am interested how you are dealing with aging. Women who are graduating college or turning 30 or 40 or 50 or 60. Men who are aging and seeing their sex drive drop. What do you think when you see the wrinkles on your face or the gray hairs or the changes brought on by childbirth or menopause? How do you cope? Is it easy… or hard? How do you feel about getting older? Is it what you expected or is it shocking?

 

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How Do You Feel About Aging? — 80 Comments

  1. As some wit once remarked about aging – “Well – it’s better than the only alternative”.

    I don’t feel much different now from how I felt 40 years ago, I look somewhat different, I guess, to others, but as most of the folks who knew me 40 years ago have gone before, and I live in a new country and continent – what the heck! Who cares?

    I was born 1939. Probably the oldest astro blogger in town! Main concern is that my brain continues to function with its current efficiency, the rest will have to do what it wants to do. My one and only effort at anti-aging, apart from watching the diet: I do have my hair colored – because I enjoy the change, not because I don’t like grey hair, I started going grey very early and grew tired of it.

    Age? My advice: forget it!

  2. “Del

    Caroline… What was offensive about it? It *is* easy to say that when one is young. Not every young person *would* say that, but some would, and I confessed to having been that person. Besides, sweetie, I’m not sure being 24 quite qualifies you as “aging” just yet. Get back to us in 20 years or so.”

    Um… just because I’m not old relative to YOU, doesn’t mean that I’m not aging. Life passes by quickly for everybody, whether you’re 24 or 84. And please don’t call me sweetie, I find that patronizing.

    Conversely, if you want to be stereotypical about it, old people always wish they were younger. But you forget about the difficulty of the growing pains of finding your identity as an individual, learning to think critically, gaining financial independence, building your strengths and skills so that you can find your place in the world, and the stress of not knowing your ass from you elbow when it comes handling difficult situations that you’ve never had to handle before.

    Neither youth nor age are better or worse. They’re two sides of the same coin. So while yes, maybe I’ll freak out a little bit when my hair starts turning white or if my knees are stiff in the morning, at least on the inside I’ll have the wisdom and peace of mind achieved through simply being on this planet for a relatively extended period of time.

    And yes, I haven’t been around for as long as you probably so I can’t actually say for a fact what my attitude will be in 20 years, but I don’t think it’s fair for anybody to assume what it will be by then.

  3. Caroline, conversely, it is unfair that you assume I wish I could turn back the clock or have forgotten the difficulties of youth. Sun conjunct Saturn in the 1st here. Moving up and out of adolescence and aging are two completely different things. I speak from experience and stand by my comment. Have a beautiful day.

  4. Ha ha, talking about “sweetie”… the other day a (male) cashier at the supermarket asked me “did you find everything ok, sweetie?” I looked at him and replied “yes but tell me, how do you ask your male customers?” 🙂

  5. i was miserable until the end of my first saturn return. wouldn’t go back to that, at all, for any amount of youth a vigor and wrinkle-free-dom. i’ve had to slow down on a number of levels due to recent health issues, but the benefits of knowledge and experience make the tradeoff of better understanding and effective application of energy vs. youth worth it.
    besides, anyone’s body can catastrophically break down at any point in their life. i have two cousins who developed severe health complications before the age of 14…. it just happens.

  6. “I agree w/PallasAthena – the body is a very, VERY different place without hormones running the show. Much calmer for sure.”

    For me, desire is like a faucet. The water is still there. Before, it was always on. Now, I can turn the handles. So if I want to slow it to a trickle when I have no lover, I can. 😉

    And no atmospheric pressure and flash floods every month!

  7. Is anyone is familiar with work of the social psychologist Erickson in the 1950’s? I think this fits in with the Saturn returns very well. He wrote this beautiful theory of ageing and the 8 trials we must negotiate through life.

    For example, the first thing we must learn as infants is either to ‘Trust’ or ‘Mistrust’ our world depending on our experiences. If we are successful then we learn hope and are better prepared to negotiate the next hurdle which is finding our own Autonomy. If we don’t do this, then we experience the reverse which is shame and so forth. At the end of our lives arrive at ‘Wisdom’ or ‘Despair’.

    My grandmother is in her 90’s and still beautiful. With her black hair, high cheek bones, she had always wanted to be a dancer but did not leave her small country village. Her destructive bitterness is legendary in the family and her awful jealousy is a barrier to wisdom. She sits and despairs. I guess the message, is open yourself up to experiences, don’t give in to fear and your age might just become your greatest asset!

  8. In my family’s culture growing older is something positive so I think that affected me. I’ve always found the fear of aging (and death) somewhat foreign. My (living) grandparents are active. They travel, volunteer and are in good health. To be honest, I wouldn’t mind having their lives right now – it’s way less stressful!

    You gain so much w/age: experience, skills, abilities, relationships, etc. I feel I’ve gained self insight and that I’m a more caring and understanding person today than when I was younger. Started doing yoga so I feel better now physically and mentally as well.

    Oh, and a reason not to rely on looks alone: http://www.elle.com/life-love/sex-relationships/advice/a10010/failure-to-launch-when-beauty-fades-323090/

  9. Isthmus….I don’t get it!!! That article was so negative. Maybe older women of color, as I am, have a different spin on aging. I’m still pretty as I was when I was young. And I don’t have any problems getting men my age or younger men. Although I’m not interested in younger men. I’m seperated from my husband of 13 years and I posted my profile, real age and photos on a few dating sites just for fun. I got literally over 700 responses. Real beauty never fades. I love who I am. And as I’ve said before. I would not trade 52 for 25 unless I know what I know now.

  10. @cosmickisses2u I also found it very negative and strange although I did like how blisteringly candid she was.

    I think how society treats the elderly makes a huge difference too. If you live somewhere where the elderly live with dignity and respect, where they’re connected w/younger generations and have important social roles – you’re going to see older people full of life. I’ve lived in this kind of environment and getting old there seems pretty good to me… In Toronto, not so much. It’s generally assumed you’re going to become more feeble and useless w/age 🙁

  11. isthmus, I could not agree more. Here in the UK ageing is very much ridiculed. You only have to look at the birthday cards to see that. The focus is all about loosing your facalities not gaining wisdom, or respect. I would love to live in a society where the elderly (and ageing) is better valued. If that could happen im so sure that values of the whole comunity would change for the better generally.

  12. I think inspiration keeps you young, from within,but then I am Pisces (:
    When I moved to Europe it did wonders for my appearance…

  13. “You only have to look at the birthday cards to see that. The focus is all about losing your facalities not gaining wisdom, or respect.”

    You only have to quit buying cards like that and they will quit making them…

  14. The only thing in life that’s ever given me any real joy is attention from men, so you can just about imagine how happy and positive I am seeing time go to work on my face and body. I can’t bother pretending I feel any differently. Yes there are women who are desired regardless of their age. A useless fact if you’re not one of them.

  15. I hate aging with a passion. And I do consider the alternative. Every day. No one looks forward to being wanted less.

    • I wonder if aging had anything to do with why Marilyn Monroe killed herself.

      I worried about aging a lot in my 20s. Up until just recently really. I have Venus/Pluto/Saturn/Neptune. I think I worried about it so much because I was unconciously afraid of being abandoned. I was afraid I would end up with no one who loves me, and all alone..I think it’s perhaps because on some level I was already all alone inside, unable to really connect with anyone, because of a constant fear of betrayal.

      But today, I think l understand that others can only love us as much as we love ourselves. Love is all around us and accessible even to the physically ugly. Beauty shines forth from within. Look at figures like Mother Theresa. She was not physically beautiful but she was definitely loved because she gave out love.

      It’s not to say I don’t ever worry about wrinkles or my cheeks hollowing out with age etc…I’d be lying if I said it never bothers me, physical beauty is, after all, a great source of power. But so is inner beauty…

      • Inner beauty is definitely another great source of power. But, it doesn’t have much power for me as a source of comfort or pain relief for the reality of getting older.

        • I understand. It’s hard because there is power in youth vitality and beauty. To be physically desirable as a woman is probably one of the greatest powers in the world, and anybody who says otherwise is just lying to themselves. But we have to accept it, because until there’s a magic anti-aging potion, inevitably, we are going to get old. Might as well make the best of it and cultivate that inner beauty/wisdom and love. There’s something to be said for it. There are older women who used to be knockouts who had to learn to love themselves and give of themselves in other ways without their looks and they can be an inspiration to others. Especially an inspiration to younger women. I’ve met a few of them. It is a hard thing to accept though, I know. Our culture gives physical beauty so much power. It’s no fun to lose that power. It’s a power to win over others…especially the opposite sex, and it can be used for advantages in all sorts of things and gives us a percieved security especially deep down, to our feelings of self-worth. Until society stops putting the importance on the outer shell, unfortunately it’s going to be this way. Every time we pick up a magazine that portrays made up perfect, young vivacious physically beautiful people and everytime we pay to see it, through television, music, etc, instead of really looking at talent, we are just feeding it.

          • Some people can adjust to aging and find other sources of joy, some can’t. I could give of myself all day long and still get into bed to shriek and sob in the dark for hours over no longer having my younger appearance. Maybe at some point this kind of grief burns itself out into neutral indifference, I really can’t say. What works for some does not work for others.

            • Maybe for some women, being able to accept it comes easier if they’re in a stable relationship. I would imagine for some people, it would be harder if you were single, but want to find a partner.

              I’m sorry you this is causing you so much grief. ❤

              • Thank you, lasirena. I am single and aging and finding it horribly lonely and terrifying.

  16. I don’t think about it much at all, honestly. I don’t think it’s something to cope with unless you make it an issue. I’ve experimented with putting my value of myself into my looks and it didn’t feel right so I chucked it. Now I can just enjoy my temporary physical beauty without being attached to it. And I think that’s beautiful:)

  17. I never dwelled on aging when I was younger, but after I went through Menopause at 51, I suddenly realized that the door to my youth was closed forever and I couldn’t go back. I didn’t like that, but like PallasAthena said earlier in the thread, I came to realize the joy of not having the hormonal emotional ups and downs I had in my younger years.

    Fast forward to my 2nd Saturn return at almost 59, I lost my job and never got another one in my field (computers). This was during Saturn in Scorpio, a very depressing time for me. I felt as if I was thrown on the scrap heap and now I was too old to start again. I tried new things, but nothing worked out well. I felt like a failure and I was in mourning.

    Now I’m 63 and surprisingly, I feel as if I was reborn. I’ve let go of my youth and my old ideas of what my life should be like. I still have more to do, but I feel comfortable in my own skin, wrinkles and all.

  18. I’ll admit that ever since I turned 40 and became a widow I find the idea of aging alone silently terrifying. In some ways it already feels like I’ve passed my expiration date.

  19. At 29 years old, I already have my first 3 grey hairs. At first, I was horrified (I’m getting old) but now I have accepted it as a natural part of life. I mean I still feel insecure (body and careerwise) but I’m starting to find my beauty in being healthy. So that’s my biggest focus right now. I have saturn in the 6th house of capricorn, along with Neptune and Venus. I’ve always had alot of health issues, teeth issues, skin issues (acne) etc and I think that’s always affected how I felt about myself. Venus conjunct saturn isnt helping either but then again my Venus is conjunct Neptune and Uranus? Not sure what to make of the triple conjunction. People often tell me I look young and I’m pretty but I need to fix my teeth and my skin issues. However lately, I’ve been quite the rebel, wearing old vintage clothing to work( saturn conjunct venus in 6th) and not giving a damn about my looks (Jupiter in first or mars in the tenth). Honestly, am not into the stereotypical trendy work wear that my coworkers wish I would wear. Less seems like more to me even with makeup unless am going on a date (Leo rising and Sun in 5th House..lol). I just started a new job with govt after applying for 9 years. Thank God for that. Happened during the Jupiter Saturn Conjunction. I’m hoping to get permanent and that I’ve gained and applied the lessons for when my saturn return happens in October 2020.

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