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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Comments

How Do You Feel About Aging? — 80 Comments

  1. oooh – a topic for me!

    I am handling it mostly by going back to childhood. I am becoming more of the person I was before I became “an attractive young woman.” In other words, I believe I am becoming more authentic but it is a slow process.

    And I try not to stare at particular things in the mirror too much.

    I am looking forward (someewhat) to my hair turning white though. My mother has beautiful white hair and I’m hoping I’ll end up with the same. Spanky!

  2. I will be 50 on August 1st!

    I still have not had a “age crisis”. I don’t have time for one.

    Yes, I still workout alot, dye my hair, use lotions and potions, but I am a Leo after all, with Venus in Leo as well. Of course I still “care” about what I look like. I think that is just part of having self-esteem – they say when one is in a depression, one of the things that happens is not caring about their appearance.

    I can still turn a few heads, and that is enough for me! But do I try to compete with the hot 20-something in the room? God No! That would be pathetic, in my opinion.

    I am in a very sexually active marriage, and my husband was an athlete his whole life, so I suppose we encourage each other to stay as healthy as possible.

    So, if the world does not come to an end before August 1st this year I will share some birthday cake with all of you!

  3. Oh Elsa, even if you do hit a nerve with this one; do you think anyone will ‘fess up ? *smile*

    I like to think that I live by my favourite Southernism: “Beauty is as beauty does” ( must be my Libra moon talking ). I think a person’s true beauty can be found in what they’ve surrounded themselves with as much or maybe more than just their physical selves.

    With that being said, I’ve been graying since my 20’s. I don’t know if that happens to all redheads, but I’ve been staining my roots with henna ever since. Other things happen that make me sigh or go ‘ugh’. I’m in my late forties without a partner, so attracting someone when your body has already been reshaped by living proves challenging, if not impossible. Guys my age seem to be ISO pristine 20-somethings with nothing going on between their ears.

    However, I do try hard to do all the healthy things for myself that I can ( water, organic, sleep, yoga, ), so no matter how old I get; I will appear to be ‘lit from within’. I don’t know if that’s something universal among Leos, but it’s my goal. That and keeping my hair long and red.

    I refuse to believe that getting old equals chopping off my hair, dressing badly, or living on prescription meds !

  4. I’m a Libra with a bunch of Virgo planets. I tend to look younger than my age. Menopause is looming though, and part of me dreads it. Another part of me is curious how it’ll be when my biology doesn’t rule my life…

  5. “Oh Elsa, even if you do hit a nerve with this one; do you think anyone will ‘fess up ? *smile*”

    When I write this kind of stuff… probably a solid 50% of what I post to this blog – I do not expect it to pay off for people for 5-10 years. Seriously.

    That is not to say some don’t take a piece and run but my personal expectation is set that far out in advance.

  6. Yes, Ava~~ I can attest, since I’ve been through ‘the change’, when your estrogen wanes–there’s a notable change. Looking back I can see how hormones can really make you crazy and then you can make some crazy decisions. I feel that I have a perspective on that now. I feel more in touch with myself and more balanced. Less mood swings, highs and lows. Its almost like you can get to know ‘you’ since you’re not PMS-ing or having period symptoms, depression, or obsessing about some guy or high as a kite ’cause some guy paid attention to you.

    Well, that’s just my experience on this passage.

    I also don’t think I would ever resort to cosmetic surgery for wrinkles and such. I have a Capricorn stellium and I want to ‘age gracefully’ (as Elsa put it). (Though sometimes…I’ll admit I think about having a more taut neckline–lol)

    P.S. Elsa…that is such a beautiful photo depicting the three generations of redheads !

  7. I’ve seen a couple greys, I’m watching my eyelids slowly drop, the lines getting deeper… I also love the speckles of grey in my man’s hair. Definitely not shocked as I see myself getting older.

    But ask me again in another 10 years, 20 years. I might have a different opinion as my body wears down…the external stuff is one thing, but aches and pains and aging organs is a whole other ballgame.

  8. How do I feel about aging? Not good in general.
    I’ve known some awesome older people, but I’m afraid I’m going to regret the large number of things I didn’t do while I was younger.

  9. On the outside I haven’t really aged. I’m almost 30, but I am constantly mistaken for a college student. This would have bothered me a few years back, but now I like it. Which means that I am definitely aging 😉

    That said, I’ve noticed some wrinkles around my eyes and on my forehead. The only thing about them that “bothers” me is that I haven’t quite done everything I want to do just yet and they are a sign that time passes, sometimes runs out, and it would be wise to remember that.

  10. I used to dye my hair all the time, and when I turned 45 due to economic downturn I stopped getting my nails done and decided to see what my hair looked like (I hadn’t seen it in 10 years). If I didn’t like it I could always dye it again.

    I did a sort of stack in the back and then grew everything out. Along the way I realized I looked fine in long hair, so I let it grow. I have really odd reactions to my hair, either people love it or they are offended that I’m not ashamed of the gray. It’s a great way to weed out control freaks, because it’s my head and it’s not hurting them…

    I was pretty incensed by the gray hair attempting to clone itself down below, still haven’t reconciled myself to the fact really. And the weird eyebrow hairs can stay away too.

    I was using Alpha Hydrox (Neoteric Cosmetics) to keep my skin cells turning on my face, and once you get used to the sting, its wonderful. (Your face will break out at first though) I think it may have been responsible for people thinking I was younger than I really was in my thirties and forties.

    My girls have been horrified about how mom is letting herself go so I got a membership to the Y for my birthday as a gift. They have a problem letting me age, they think I’m not aging, I’m giving up. To me, why fight something inevitable?
    Because it’s their money I’m more careful to attend, I don’t want to waste it. I told myself just suffer through a year, maybe you’ll establish some good habits.

    I second what Pallas wrote, the release of energy back to yourself is really enlightening. You begin to see how you made yourself crazy in the past, every month, lol…

    The best part about the cusp of fifty is mental. I love my growing self assurance. I realize what’s important to me and focus my energy. I take care in my friendships and family connections.

    I’m learning to distance myself from work acquaintances and competitive drama. In five years, it won’t matter.

  11. Kind of a heavy topic for me today. Saturn is conjunct my Venus right now, and I can say that it’s affecting my self-image, not in a good way 🙁 Just telling myself it will pass. That being said…

    I’ve aged gracefully, though I’ve definitely got areas of my body that I avoid looking at in the mirror. I have no intention of messing with it surgically — I’m superstitious about messing with Mother Nature! We’re given what we’re given for a reason, that sort of thing. I do highlight my crowning glory, though — I am a Leo after all:)

  12. I feel okay with it. I’ll be 33 in May. I think most of my acceptance comes from my gratitude from good genes. Both my parents are healthy seniors. They have always encouraged us to exercise (mostly by refusing to drive us anywhere meaning we had to walk/ride a bike).

    The most important thing is being active. Use it or lose it.

    My father didn’t start growing gray until his 60s. I’m hoping I have that gene but if I don’t, no biggie I’ll probably dye my hair. My boyfriend has been put on patrol because I can´’t be bothered to examine my head like that.
    One thing that does bother is the hair on my chinny chin chin—god does that piss me off. I spent a fortune on electrolysis and it didn’t work for me. I didn’t exactly anticipate on growing a beard once I hit 30.

    As long as my body works I plan on taking everything in stride and refuse to play into this song and dance that I become useless after a certain sell by date.

    I have Capricorn and I adore my elders. I look forward to being one myself.

  13. i guess age is just numbers. its the outlook of the person that matters. i also believe that if we take care of our bodies while we were young, we will be at ease with it when we aged. i was a sickly child and im still sickly. i feel like my life has been robbed from me. i just do my best to take care of my body. stay away from chemicals as much as possible.

  14. PallasAthena, yes, that’s exactly how I imagine life after menopause, so thanks for confirming that.
    🙂
    I also find that there’s so much more genuine support from other women around this life stage than when I had my children. That’s certainly comforting.

  15. My ever-youthful Gemini mother insists that I was born a little old lady, with one hand on my hip and the other one waggling a finger.

    I was an early bloomer in almost all regards and was always assumed to be much older than I was. It was a relief to cross over into my 30s and to feel less pressure to conform to some standard of youth that never really fit me.

    I do want to maintain my vitality – physically, mentally, sexually, emotionally/spiritually – but I don’t see that as antithetical to the aging process. I tend to feel more settled, more whole, and happier with each passing year.

    Not sure what the astrology for this would be. I’ve got Saturn in Leo, conjunct my DC (and therefore opposing my Aquarius AC). Venus is in Scorpio in the 9th/10th house (opposing Jupiter in Taurus in the 3rd/4th).

    My husband feels the opposite. He fights/denies aging, wants to be young forever, and will not discuss end-of-life issues – and that is sort of stressful to me. His Saturn is retrograde in Cancer in the 6th, and he has Venus conjunct his Sun in Scorpio.

  16. I’m enjoying aging. I’m 24. Next year is the year where everybody gags when they realize they’re a quarter century old, but I’m enjoying gaining wisdom, and things that seemed like such a big deal when I was younger, are no sweat now. What’s not to like about that?

  17. Chin hair: UGH. It’s only getting worse and worse. Can’t afford to laser it off–

    And the grey: yep, I had a few grey hairs last year and now it’s a bit more. Recently got a hair cut and the woman recommended doing highlights all over instead of targeting grey – not sure yet.

    I never felt strong in the area of beauty so having any of it taken away is hard. On the up side, people always tell me I look young. True, I don’t have many wrinkles — the ones I have are from worrying, not from smiling… 🙂

    But my skin is aging because of the sun I guess and just from getting older. It feels very very very odd to be almost forty. Kind of unreal. How did it come to this? And what’s next?

    I would probably be happy in a country where I could keep my face covered. Seriously. Although I get hot easily and whoa that would be the challenge–

    Venus square Saturn….

    As for the body: well, that’s another story, but I’m eating much healthier these days…

    I envy men so much. To me, they only get better and better looking. Of course there are very beautiful women over 40….

    Rambling here… But I don’t really don’t want to be one of those shivled up grey haired bent over ladies with a walker. If I live that long, let me be upright and healthy.

  18. How do I feel about aging? Clueless. Totally clueless about it. I don’t doubt it’s happening, but I rarely think about it, either way. And when I try to – like now – I can’t really get a grip on anything. Wonder what aspect this is due to??

    Hmm, wonder if there’s a downside to being so clueless? It’s not that I feel young… Just not in touch with time, I guess. And on that level, it’s weird to me that, just now – reading this post – I saw the date “March 27”, and I thought to myself “oh, that’s nearly a year ago”. So WHAT DATE DO I THINK IT IS TODAY? Seriously, I don’t think I’d pass those psych-ward questions, where they ask you what day of the week it is, what year, and the like. I’m clueless about all this stuff! ::shakes head at self::

  19. It’s easy to say you look forward to aging gracefully when you’re young… I know I did. Now that I’m in my forties and gravity is taking hold, it’s saddening… not so much because I’m “losing my looks,” but more because it’s hitting home how fast life goes by. It’s the realization that I don’t have all that much time left. How am I going to make those years count? Why did I waste all those years on fluff?

  20. “It’s easy to say you look forward to aging gracefully when you’re young…”

    This reminded me of something my sister said once which was “You are never as young as you are today.”
    I try to enjoy every day of my life so essentially what I’m saying is I’d like to endeavour to continue to enjoy ALL my days…
    I’ve lost so many people I love already I don’t want to waste that time worrying about my chin hair (though I give it a once over every morning, ha ha ha)
    plus if I think if I worry in my 30s, how much could I worry in my 60s? Would I worry so much I fall off the face of the earth?

  21. ELSA… yes! I was just scrolling down to write I would really like to know how to transfer my sense of relevance. I grew up thinking I was smart and hideous and so I developed my brain. Sometime during my 20s I discovered being attractive and I will fully admit that it has given me a sense of power and lust and participation in life. Now I’m looking at wrinkles and eye bags and dark spots and aches and pains and that’s all fine, but how am I going to feel when… I don’t know a PC way to say this. How am I going to feel when I’m not the hot piece anymore? Hahaha. Is that a total illusion anyway? I would love a straightforward non-PC answer to this.

    I have a lot of other things to offer the world besides my sexuality. I’m a mom and I have a Ph.D. and a lot of ideas and it’s kind of funny I’ve even gotten attached to what I look like. I’m just really curious, will I feel attractive when I’m 45? 55? 65? Will I care? Will other things be more important? I see plenty of older women who do look, feel, and act both sexy and fulfilled and I want to know what it feels like on the inside. Because even knowing that I could dedicate myself to career and accomplishments in my 40s and 50s, something inside me doesn’t want to let go of being desirable ever, not till I’m 120. That’s probably exactly the thing I need to make peace with in order to age gracefully, so I’m looking forward to hearing because there are plenty of sexy women on this board who can probably tell me.

  22. It’s a hard one for me. I have venus conjunct saturn in gemini in the 2nd, trine uranus in the 6th. I am unusual looking and was teased hardcore as a kid. Being an attractive adult and dressing well, was invaluable for finding my place in the world. I had a pretty long run of being able to “own” the room based on my looks. Not that I really did anything with it. I am not hungry for power over people at all. It was purely security based. If everyone thinks I’m beautiful, I won’t be rejected, type deal. I look young for my age, and I can still work a room just fine, but I’d be lying if I said getting older is not hard on me. It is. Yes, I have many talents and I develop them. I never ever stop learning, but I do envy men who have such a longer window of being perceived as attractive.

  23. I have a bunch of planets in my sixth house of Virgo and I’m a Gemini Rising. At 52 I look and feel much younger than I am. Besides that, I don’t think much about ageing. It’s gonna happen whether you worry about it or not. The only alternative is death while young.
    Every age is special in it’s own way. I celebrate every birthday. I do know this much. I wouldn’t trade being young ever again unless I know what I know now.

  24. It’s been a few years of celibacy for me, but before that sex was a whole lot better than in my twenties…

    but how am I going to feel when… I don’t know a PC way to say this. How am I going to feel when I’m not the hot piece anymore?

    False modesty serves no one, and young women are the hot piece, to be sure…

    I think like many women I judge my attractiveness based on male reaction, so at first not getting the head turn and the stare made me feel invisible.

    Now it’s such a relief! There’s a feeling of anonymity that the perverse, quirky side of me loves.

    To be candid, not all male attention is good attention either. Bad events have happened in my life that I blame somewhat on appearance (and a little bit on opportunity). Predators are folks you’d like NOT to notice you.

  25. hmm, just saw what I wrote and it seems as if I’m calling you disingenuous. Not at all.

    I’m trying to say I know it’s tricky to even SOUND as if you’re aware you’re attractive because then people call you conceited. To me, a person is just being honest if they notice they’re attractive.

    Because attractiveness is just luck you were handed at birth, nothing earned. It can just as easily be taken away by accident or life event, it’s that ethereal.

  26. interesting responses here.

    aging kinda pisses me off. grey hair is nothing, i started getting it in my twenties. pink and blue covers it nicely. but they physical stuff sometimes annoys me. the aches and pains and shit. i don’t have the stamina i did years ago and i don’t like that.

    i never was the hot chick, so i didn’t have that to lose. heck, on a good day, i get more attention now that way than i did in my twenties. (i’m 44.) yay to the cougar movement. 🙂

    the biggest difference i noticed is that i am less willing to deal with anyone or anything that i feel wastes my time. i have a heightened awareness of time.

    overall, i don’t mind. i like the self-assurance, experience, and confidence that comes from being older. i know it’s a lot easier for me than some because i have a life partner. i think that would change things a lot. i’ve got somebody to grow old with, and to whom i’m responsible for taking care of myself. it’s a commitment to honor in my mind.

  27. In addition, I’ve wondered what it might be like when my hormones are’nt trying to run my life.
    I find the candor of everyone’s answers to this post enlightening, helpful, and AMAZING. I feel fortunate to be in such fantastic company here !

  28. I hate aging. Never bothered until 3 years ago. I am newly single. I do not like my wrinkles. I am allergic to all those enhanced beauty products.

    SO, I look my age, Well, no one else does. I get to be 80 in my late 50’s. How great.

    Not a badge of courage, denigrating in the society that I live in.

  29. brizo, I didn’t take your comment badly. I only feel strange admitting that being attractive is important to me when I feel somehow I should be detached or above it, especially when it’s so short-lived and random. But I thought I’d just say it even though it sounds shallow. I know that being just old enough to maybe not be having any more children is bothering me, as is the idea that, since I’m not married, I might find myself alone again someday.

    cosmickisses, I love your post and you look fantastic.

  30. I grew up thinking I was smart and hideous and so I developed my brain.
    ——

    Yep, me too. And I don’t think anyone honestly told me he thought I was hot until maybe this past year or so? I’m 37, and … I look 37. At least in my eyes. I am trying to embrace my middle age by remembering all the things that sucked about being young that growing up took care of.

    Saturn rising much? *chuckle*

    • So seven years later …

      Mostly I’m pretty happy being mid forties. I’m doing my best to take care of myself, because I’d like to live to be old and opinionated.

      My father was really sick the last five or six years of his life. He aged so rapidly during that time. He was 61 when he passed but easily looked 80. And I don’t mean just physical appearance, but his body was pretty wrecked too. Pop’s 30 year struggle with diabetes is something I watched, and used to inspire my own health care and improvement efforts.

      So. I’m enjoying my 40s a lot. I’m not enjoying the wrinkles, if I’m honest, but I don’t hate them either. I earned them honestly. 🙂

  31. I think admitting that being/feeling attractive is just being real. I don’t think attractiveness is so much exactly what you look like, but how you feel about yourself. It’s more of caring enough about yourself to take the time to feel good. I don’t mean plastic surgery – but eating well, getting some exercise, going to the beauty parlor, etc. It is delusional to think that being gorgeous means you will be happy and loved (uh, hello, Sandra Bullock, Jennifer Aniston,
    and the list goes on!)

  32. Even young gravity is not all that kind to large chested gals, so I’ve never really had perky anything. And only being 4’11” and a gemini rising to boot, have always been thought to be younger than I am, it’s only been this past year at age 32, have I stopped getting carded for things.
    I’ve never been deemed anything but ‘cute’ so sexy and beautiful have never been ways I’ve defined myself, so aging hasn’t affected how I feel about myself that way. I’ve always been praised for my creativity and intelligence and occasional wittiness, so age shouldn’t affect that much. Really the only thing I fear about aging is losing myself to something like dementia or extreme loss of physical movement like parkinson’s. I don’t know how many here have read Terry Pratchett’s books, but I fully intend to be a Nanny Ogg.

  33. I don’t like the thin, almost crepe paper skin around my eyes. I will confess I do more for myself now than I ever did before. I have pedicures, facials, and chemical peels. What does it do for me at 51? I can’t say it does anything except make me feel better and help me relax. And I both like and need that…

    I would like to share a story from recently related to age and me. I always thought I was comfortable with who I am. I met a good friend (I thought) online. We talked online, and on the phone for months. We met in person and kept on talking. Got on very well together. Enjoyed each other’s company. For some reason age never came up. Then one day I said something about being 51, and my “friend” went silent. Keep in mind we’d met in person. The friendship was never the same afterwards. She explained later she felt betrayed…That was the 1st time I ever felt self conscious about my age.

  34. “Del

    It’s easy to say you look forward to aging gracefully when you’re young… I know I did.”

    I take offense to this comment.

  35. When I was younger…I seemed to “turn quite a few heads” as they say. I got more attention than I wanted. It made me feel uncomfortable. I lived in New York and men on the street would comment to me all the time, saying, “oh baby, you so fine”…whistling, oogling. I was mortified. I hated it. But, I have to say, after 50…its like you’re invisible all of a sudden. No one sees you. And then you think to yourself…”what’s up..am I no longer here, am I no longer valid?” Its a strange new dynamic.

    My daughter is 17 and very beautiful. When we go out in public men give her a lot of attention and it makes her uncomfortable. She says that she doesn’t mind it so much when cute guys look at her…but it “creeps her out” when dirty old men look at her, etc. I told her, “honey, enjoy it while you can”…because I know when I could garner the attention…I didn’t want it and now that I’m in my fifties…its like I’m invisible.

  36. So much to agree with!

    Lilypond: high five, woman! Nanny Ogg is fabulous!

    “I might have a different opinion as my body wears down…the external stuff is one thing, but aches and pains and aging organs is a whole other ballgame.”

    Yes! Yes, yes, yesh! The cosmetic stuff I don’t really mind (much, says the 31-year old who’s using waaay too many anti-aging products), but the physical decline bothers me. Thankfully, my family seems to either die young or age well. No middle-ground of dying listlessly by inches.

    “I grew up thinking I was smart and hideous and so I developed my brain.”

    I’ll third that. I wrote a thread about it on the boards once so I won’t go into it here, but even if I’m never the prettiest / hottest thing in the room, I know I’m definitely one of the most interesting.

    ~*~*~*~*~*~

    I just had a vision of all us ladies hanging out in some bar other than Elsa’s and getting hit on left and right. *snort* Ladies out enjoying themselves without giving a damn about anyone else’s opinion always draw a crowd.

    ~*~*~*~*~*~

    And for my last thought…
    I found my first gray hair at nine. We’ve had a lot of time to become buds and I don’t mind them. I think they’re pretty. BUT:
    I decided to dye my hair a while back in a fit of boredom. The first time SuperScorp saw it afterward, he was pouting! No lie. “I thought you liked the gray. I miss it!” he says. *rofl*

  37. I am 48, with a 58 year old lover. Its interesting, because I notice he has age issues (comments at times that he makes give it away, and lets face it, he’s hit his second saturn return as well) but to me, he is a sexy and wonderful as any young stud. And since we’ve been lovers, someone has commented that he looks 20 years younger, even though they don’t know the reason why. So I’m not suggesting you all go out and take lovers (and believe me, I’m not making this a flippant thing—and obviously there are a whole heap of other issues here that I’m not discussing because it is not relevant to the point I want to make) but a healthy sex life is surely one of the elixirs of youth I think.

  38. 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. 😉

  39. I agree w/PallasAthena – the body is a very, VERY different place without hormones running the show. Much calmer for sure. I’m very happy to leave all the work of being hot & sexy to you younger people (I’m 63).

    Aging is not a disease either . . . just a natural process one goes through. All those boring Virgo things like eating right, getting plenty of exercise and enough sleep are the keys. 😀

  40. I’m a Leo and I deeply love myself… you don’t mind if people you love get older, do you? I don’t mind either. Every day is the best day to be happy and grateful to be alive.

  41. My mother had a face lift a while ago and she looks great but I hate it. I can’t help make assumptions that she has more energy than she really does, that she is tougher than she really is and that she will be around forever, when in fact she is an old lady. It is disconcerting.

    Rekiheart! Your post could have been written by me! What does happen to single 40 something’s with long red hair?? Should we become ageing Rapunzel’s and go for the eccentric look? Or should we bow to social expectation and get a neat streaky bob instead?

  42. PallasAthena
    I’m 52 and I’m anything but invisable. And although I’m far from 17 or looking like one, I turn a lot of heads and still get cat calls by cuties and creeps.
    I think it has a lot to do the a person’s attitude about aging. Some embrace it. Some repell it like a contagious disease.
    Of course we all know that DNA plays a part in how we look. But I do believe that self confidence and feeling good about who you are plays a role in the law of attraction.

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