I have been reading and hearing quite a lot about feminism and ageism recently and it’s beginning to annoy me!
So here goes:
I am 66 years old, retired, overweight and short; I also have one or two medical problems that limit my mobility – but do I feel old – NO! Why should I?
I am me and you are you, I’m sure that although I’m probably classified as an old fart who should sit in the corner and knit for her grandchildren, I don’t and won’t. I see each day as an opportunity to find something out or learn something – sorry if I sound sanctimonious, but don’t write me off as, even with my wrinkles which I consider experience lines, I feel young at heart.
I dress to feel comfortable, certainly won’t wear vertiginous heels – but that doesn’t mean I can’t wear court shoes – haven’t got the figure for fashionable short skirts, but you won’t catch me in tweed (sorry if you like tweed).
I’ll admit to you now that with my weight, if I was 8 foot tall, I could wear fashionable stuff, so I stick to my style and enjoy it. I must say here that those who want to wear clothes who show lots of cleavage and flash the panties or g-string with short skirts and tell me it’s your right, I’ll agree with you – but consider if a man left his flies undone and flashed his pants or nether regions, you would complain, wouldn’t you?
What’s good for the gander is good for the goose – that’s equality, so consider what you look like when you do go out. I can’t dress like that, but I will dress smartly and hold my own in conversation with all age groups, because inside I’m certainly not 66, nearer half that age.
I come from an age in which I had no rights, I couldn’t vote until I was 21 and even then could not sign the forms for my own operation, my then husband had to sign the forms! Now kids can go for an abortion without their parents knowing and yet mine was a life saving operation but I had no rights to sign myself!
So, I have seen Women’s Lib, didn’t burn my bra – they would have been too uncomfortable without a bra! But I have always believed that women and men should be equal, be paid the same and be treated the same. But even now, men in their fifties get treated a lot different to women of the same age. Why? Even the BBC do it!
Women in their fifties have usually finished with the child rearing and want to get on with life and enjoy it – are men frightened of us not being the “little woman”, well I’ve got news for you most of us have never been that.
Most of us have had to work whilst the kids were at school and now we want to get on and make sure we have money to spend and to save for our pensions. We are bright and willing to learn the modern office or other work place and are usually reliable.
So why do you think we are invisible, OK – we aren’t “bright young things” on the outside and probably won’t boost a male bosses ego as much – but we are just as young inside and won’t get pushed in the corner of life – because we have built up a lot of knowledge, empathy and common sense, and we know we can get on with life.
So don’t look at the wrinkles, look underneath at the vibrant woman shining through.
Finally, I got my last promotion when I was 54 and I wouldn’t be knitting for my grandchildren – if I could knit – it would be for my great-grandchildren!
So come on you ladies in your fifties and above, best foot forward and shine.