I’ve had some recent conversations with colleagues and co-conspirators about… “So what would bring about significant changes in the way we think about older age?”
A common concern is the focus upon older people as a “group”…who are they? Am I one? Why should we think about older people separately at all, they’re just people!
Time and time again when I’ve listened to people consider reports or discuss policies dealing with older people say, “What! 50+ ! You are kidding! I’m x years old and I’m not old!”
Senior officers, civil servants, elected members as well as Members of Parliament still continue to display extraordinary ambivalence and indifference to the ageing society and its older citizens. Many seem to be in denial of ageing themselves.
One action which might change the way that we think about older age is to require each author, local government officer, civil servant, elected member and Government Minister of any policy document to publicly declare their personal attitudes towards their own ageing.
Check out this great personal ageing story by Dan Hanna – The daily photo ageing project http://www.danhanna.com/aging_project/p.html
There is no template for ageing in later life nowadays. We’re creating a new footprint both as a society collectively as well as our own individual experience.
“We need urgently to invent a collective story about the value of growing older….
It is a paradox of our ageing society that many of us seem increasingly obsessed with the idea of youth…..Rather than regressing to its youth our ageing society might do well to reclaim some of the benefits of growing older: wisdom, finesse and accumulated experience.”
Eternal Youths Demos http://www.demos.co.uk/publications/eternalyouthsbook
We need to change the current attitude to ageing
We need Liber-ageing!!!!!…..