Everyone is Ageist
Updated: Jan 3, 2019
Prejudice against old people is embedded in our culture. Statements that denigrate older people’s functioning, thinking and appearance, advocates say, can lead to old people being stigmatized, isolated, ignored, politically disadvantaged and treated as “others.
Researchers have found numerous links between cultural ageism and health problems — physical, cognitive and emotional — among older people.
Challenging ageism means getting people to pay closer attention to messages they’ve been hearing all their lives. Even old people are ageist, having heard the same anti-aging messages throughout their lives.
We internalize the message that “younger is better “and fear our future selves.
Fighting ageism starts with thinking about old age as “a time of growth, learning, exploration, adventure. ” *
*Todd D. Nelson, psychologist California State University.