The AARP recently published a slide show that first irritated me then caused me to think more deeply about this relentless process of aging. The slide show illustrated age 70+ celebrities whom the AARP labeled as “age defying.” All of them were women. I would bet substantial money that most of them had invested substantial sums in plastic surgery.
What I don’t like is the AARP holding up wealthy celebrities as a standard of “age defiance” to which we all should aspire. No one should think that natural ageing is an illness or health condition that needs to be prevented or corrected.
This slide show was a mistake by the AARP. I wonder who the editor was that approved this? Was it a female worried about wrinkles and sagging? Or maybe the editor was a male who can’t see beauty in older women who look their age? Why weren’t any men featured in the article? We know that there are plenty of male celebrities who have had “work” done.
This brings up even bigger questions: What does it mean to “defy your age”? Should “age defiance” be on everyone’s agenda?
After considerable thought, I have arrived at this conclusion. First, we should embrace or at least accept our age. Pushing against our age only adds to whatever stress and discomfort we might be experiencing. However, we should all aspire to counteract the negative health effects of ageing. By this I mean adopting proper eating, exercise and sleep habits. All of this can maintain and even improve your health. Wrinkles won’t hurt you. Thirty pounds of belly fat will hurt you. Being a couch potato will hurt you. Yes, these factors will hurt you at any age but the consequences are more dire as we move into AARP territory.
Sadly, it appears that in our culture, older folks have not done a good job of taking care of themselves so a more than a little “age defiance” help may be needed. That help will not be found at the plastic surgeon’s office.
Here is a link to the AARP slide show.
So what are your thoughts on age defiance? Would you go under the knife if the price was right?