Do You Fear Getting Older?

September 10, 2013
Category: Wellness
Older Gay

Whether you're a 20-something or 70-something there's one thing we all have in common: we're getting older. Year after year, decade after decade, we find ourselves getting closer towards whatever it is that's waiting for us at the end. As our bodies start to show more and more proof of living (hello wrinkles! oh hey gray!), it becomes all too apparent that there's no escaping the aging process. And in a youth obsessed culture, that can be a frightening thing. Whether it's purely superficial or on a deeper level of accomplishment, looking at what the future holds is something we have to face head on.

When we're young it seems like we can't wait to grow up. But even with that eagerness to be an adult, fears still abound when it comes to getting on in our years. Similarly, when you've reached a certain age, you can find yourself wistful about your youth, not really realizing what a better place your in with time, experience, and perspective. Over at The Advocate they've got a new column called Prim Timers that focuses on the LGBT community over 65 and how life can be lived at any age. They've got plenty of great content over there from stories to film recommendations all that showcase lives well lived.

I'm of the belief that as a community we can collectively debunk the myth that the best of your gay days are before 40. Working for Daddyhunt all these years, I've talked to a bunch of happy, enthusiastic gay daddies and silverdaddies at our events and here online. If we can all continue to inspire and live our lives to the fullest till the very end, I think we've got a good shot of changing societies beliefs. The Prime Timers stories are a good place to start, but now it's your turn.

Do you fear getting older or welcome it with open arms?

Tags: Fears, Age, Ageism, Getting Older
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Post written by RobHeartsDH (View Author Profile)
About this author: Rob lives in Manhattan with his black pug Riley. When he’s not thinking about daddies, he enjoys writing, eating burritos, watching copious amounts of television, and thinking about his next meal.
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Comments

Not only do I fear getting older, I've always been attracted solely to older men, and I fear that there won't be anyone to whom I'm attracted.

I have been worried about this since a teenager. However, as I get older, I'm starting to realize, as cliche' as it sounds, but "age really is a state of mind". Life would be a hell of a lot easier if I was attracted to men my own age, but who said life was easy? It it's a challenge and I embrace it. xx

No FEAR of getting older [the alternative is no more attractive] but do think it requires planning & preparation. At least there are no children to prevent me from spending every last dime to ensure my passage may be moderately dignified. A young partner could be a huge help ! LOL

The single greatest truth in Shakespeare is in King Lear, "Ripeness is all."

That sums it up. It's what I tell myself each birthday, that I'm lucky to be celebrating another one. Each year is a gift.

The unaging Dorian Greys are missing out on life's great adventure.

I'm having a grand time as I'm aging. I always went for older "real men" when I was younger, then found myself with guys closer to my age, and now, at 60, find myself being "hit on" by some younger men. My main attraction then and now, are men with facial hair and hairy bodies. I've had two LTR's of radically different kinds. The first was monogamous with an older lover and the second was open with a man my same age. I'm having a blast as a single man again, but am "hunting" for my third (and hopefully the charmer) relationship, of either type to settle into as I reach further into my 60's. I'm young at heart, look younger, am more physically active that most my age and have "no fear" of aging. Staying sexually active and attractive sure doesn't hurt!

I also want to thank RobHeartsDH for posting such interesting and varied topics and questions here in this forum and introducing them so well. It's a pleasure to read his thought provoking introductions and the great responses he extracts from his "fan club!" Thanks, Rob.
Hugs, Jack

I don't fear it - I hate it! Our culture is ageist and we become that bit more invisible with each year we admit to. You have two options: submit to irrelevance or be dismissed as a "grumpy old man". And you have to realize there are end-of-life things that have to be put in place.

That having been said, I don't let it affect my life. And that includes not even discussing my age. or yours. It's a benchmark of exactly nothing. You'll find out my age on a need-to-know basis, and I'll decide that. I'm disappointed at the onslaught "Misters" on this site advertising their ageism: I've worked damned hard to be the man I am, so don't estimate my value by my birth certificate.

So yeah, that's one way for "the community" to debunk flagrant ageism with a straight answer to a nosy question: "Son I'm not too old and I'm not too young to be your Daddy: any more questions?"

You'll either move on at an enjoyably fast pace or the rude little tart will head for the hills!

When you open with "I don't fear it - I hate it," and then say it doesn't affect your life, I'm finding the opening sentence more the truth of it than the latter statement. Hating ANYthing affects your line, brother. If it doesn't affect your life, you're indifferent. Hate is a VERY powerful reaction, and it certainly doesn't mean 'I don't care. It doesn't bother me.' Which is it?

it all depends if you are lucky; if you find a guy who wants you every thing changes, no matter what.

True - a man in my life would change everything - but how likely is that if i'm invisible...

I have found as I have aged to be more comfortable with myself. I was never a very comfortable 20 something. In fact I found my understandings of life and happiness have blossomed after I reached an age some fear.

I am very happy now and of course I think that when we are young we are so concerned to make sure we look good to other people. That is so superficial. Make yourself look good to you. To hell with what others say.

We do live in a silly superficial world in which we wear what ever is in style to be part of the times. Well I have long ago said to hell with that and dressed and acted to enjoy what I like. It allowed me to discover who i really was. To be honest I have never looked back.

Getting older was the best thing in the world for me.

The idea of a youth obsessed culture is absurd. It is just a sub-category of superficial obsessed culture. And only shallow people need concern themselves with the repercussions of it. If one cultivates integrity in their life, they'll be 100% no matter how they appear.

I'm an average 60 yo guy, have a gut, can't keep it up,but ,can still be a heavy shooter,don't look for younger guys, have had one gay steady lover - 4 yr.s, but, don't feel comfortable when I go to gay enviroments. Don't get alot of intrest,but, I understand why. I wish we could be more friendly and polite to each other - no matter what age we are. We do need to be cautious and avoid dangerous types, but, a smile, head nod, wink,etc. would be such a comforting thing when we are @ our own clubs/bars, events. Is that unreasonable?

Yes.
Would you ask the same of attractive young heterosexual women in relation to older men they aren't attracted to in "their own" clubs/bars?

I think aging is ok...its a part of life..........if you find yourself hitting the bars the same way you did in your 20s you probably are pretty worn out by now...but if you have good health..then you are blessed. The rest is fate. Be happy w/urself..do good and be kind.

Well, at 71 most people expect Grandma Moses with a cane and then I come beboping in and I just look at them and say, "What?" lol I am very much like Gloria Steinem....this is what 71 looks like, get over it! I have and will continue to have a wonderful life. I think the secret is to realize that each era of our lives has a reason to be cherished. It's all a learning experience on the long and meaningful journey.
When I was younger I knew what I wanted. Now that I'm older I know what I don't want.
Kinda clears the chaff from the wheat so to speak. Life is just like a plate of bones. Suck the marrow boys, suck the marrow!

What I fear most is the relationship between age and achievement.

Getting older is a fact of life. How we(each of us)deal with that is what separates those who are happy and those who are not. Sure being young is special and great but being older also is special and great. One should not limit themselves because of age. We who are older can look at both sides now and realize that it was good/fun/exciting to be young. So if you want to relive that get a young lover and enjoy it together.
Enjoy your life what ever the age. Have a good life in what ever your decision.

Fear getting older? No, not at all. Sometimes I think it really sucks, though, because there are major things I wish I'd known about myself at a much younger age so that I wouldn't have beat my head against a brick wall for so long. At those times I feel like I lost large, valuable chunks of my life. Mind you, I'm talking about much bigger issues than most people ever have to deal with, i.e. Bipolar Disorder II and mild Aspergers. Other than wishing to have understood and negotiated around those better, I feel that I am a product of my experiences and can not imagine wanting to be other than who I am.

If men didn't age I probably never would've slept with any. Sounds weird but it's only the older/mature look I'm attracted to

When I was a boy I had sex with men. Older men. My first lover was 53 and I was 22. I loved him very much. He died of a heart attack on the way to visit me. The real problem is that other gay men who are young now think they are immortal and therefore superior to older men. Since I never really liked guys my own age I never bothered with most of them.Now as an older man I have found guys turning their heads away from me and actually sneer. LOL sneer at me, naw because I am a big fierce handsome man. Some men who have known me for a long time say I am lucky. Some of us age better then others and are blessed with good looks as we get older. Really though it is all allusion. Nothing is permeant and all things change. I just hope I have the good sense and taste to age gracefully and then show that class to all men that I meet. Hey you should do a couple features on gay men who are Gay Games champions who are now in their 50's, 60's, and 70's and now 80's, like me ;) Big Daddy Hercules

As I get Older ,I just get BETTER.

Being older sucks. I want to be young again.

When I look at the statistics of those killed in auto accidents, the millions of those killed and wounded in wars, ancient and modern, they reflect so many who never had the chance to lead fruitful lives.

Stop complaining about what's left, and reflect on this, and I am not the author, "Yesterday is history. tomorrow is mystery. Today is a gift, and that's why we call it the present."

If you moan about the past, and fear the future, then you forget to live today.

When I am asked "what did you do today?" I reply, "I woke up and got up!"

Thus I could decide to go places, see people, and do things, if I chose.

As an elderly man, 80 next year, I find that young men keep me feeling young(er) mentally/emotionally. My physical state I share with my primary care physician.

Find something to laugh and smile about each day.

I fear NOT getting older.

I am wrestling with it right now... .Every day is a gift, but sometimes I want to return it for a different size.... I have become more accepting of it and am having fun poking at it... It is what it is... Can't change it so... onward

Fear? No. Well......maybe a bit since I see what dementia is doing to the elderly relatives on my father's side of the family (but they are about 90). I've always taken after my mom's side so I'm counting on those genes where everyone stayed healthy and active well into their 90's.

I do agree with rickinoz above about how people treat you when you tell them your age. Although it is "only a number" people ascribe certain traits/beliefs to it and if they believe it is an age that is "too old" than you are automatically cut out (which, if they're that superficial may not be a loss). My usual reply is that I am as old as they think I am. If they perceive me as younger than my age, great. If they think I'm older than maybe I'm acting like a grumpy old man. I don't want to lie about my age but since I don't ask others that question I don't like it to be someone's opener. Interests, values, concerns, ideas, opionions, beliefs, etc, etc, are all more important if you want to know a person. [when did it become acceptable to ask someone thier age?]

Maintaining a positive outlook, being willing to try new things, forgiveness, clarity, not being afraid to look foolish, continuing to learn, having a sense of self and sense of humor, staying involved and active will keep you feeling young even as your body ages.

On that note, I'm going to enjoy my next age related transition -- early retirement -- and focus on finding new interests to pursue and meeting new and hopefully interesting people along the way.

This age thing is evident with each glimpse in the mirror. At 65, I find myself relaxed, stable , comfortable with who and what I am. I have been blessed with great Italian genes and usually am taken for 10 years younger. Frankly, that blessing is a bit of a curse because very young men 18-24 find me attractive and I adore younger men. So what's the problem? I want a relationship, and that is almost impossible with a man in his 20's sure I may get a couple of years out of the relationship (speaking from experience) but all said and done I'd be 2 years older and alone. My problem is finding the right man from 35-50 who I find attractive and has the depth, and staying power to eventually bury me...lol

Save your fear and worry for the things in life we have the ability to change. We all age a day at a time. Each of us has one year of our life to be 21 and no more. Meanwhile, there ARE things we can do to make sure that we have a fruitful and fun time. I thank the Silver Daddies site for frequent reminders that there are lots of interesting men of all ages who enjoy guys in our 60's. I'll let you know about the 70's when I get there. You CAN take good care of yourself. By the time you reach your 60's, you should have developed some interesting opinions about life on this planet. Surely you have learned SOMETHING in all these years! If all you have of interest is sex and your body, then you have built your house on a very poor foundation. Don't get me wrong. Sex is (at least so far) an adult life-long joy, and I want it to last as long as my life does. But we can attract people with our minds and our actions as well as with a young body. I read other posters on this subject who say that their relationships with really young men often do not last. I, for one, am NOT a worshiper of youth. Never have been. But if you're spending your time worrying and fearing the future, you're wasting the present, and that's where we live. Meanwhile, I'm living my life so that if/when I end up bedridden in an old folk's home, I will have a LOT of really pleasant (and HOT!!!) memories. And yes, Silver Daddies HAS helped.

Neither fear it nor welcome it....IT IS. But not to pleased with the process of aging. Quite frankly it is NOT for wimps. M

Agreed! I've already made plans for when I want to wimp out.

When I turned 30, I thought that I arrived and was going to enter a plane of greater wisdom. I thought that I would be taken seriously overnight, and that I had established all the tools that would carry me through the rest of my life. These last couple of years have been humbling to me. I've learned that I'm actually still naive about a lot in life.

My fear of growing older is not about what the aging process will do to me, but on how I'm going to take care of my parents during their elderly years. Will I be strong enough to take care of them, but also plan well enough to be able to take care of myself when I enter my elderly years? Will I have enough time to spend with my parents before they become too old to travel? My mother said that when the time comes, we'll have to find a partner for me so that I won't be alone when her and my stepfather are gone. I laughed a little because I'm so focused on them that I don't even think about life without them. I suppose I have plenty of things to keep me distracted. But one day, I will be faced with my own mortality.

I don't fear getting older, because if I'm getting older I'm still alive! And that's way better than the alternative. But I'm not happy about it, particularly as I enter my mid-60s. Look at the profiles. Everyone who wants an older man is looking for someone UP TO AGE 50, or 55, or 60. It's very rare that guys who I'm attracted to are looking for someone past 60.

I used to fear it -- but sites like this really have changed everything. I have realized there is a demand out there for people just like me, and there is a way for me to connect with those people. I have even been blocked from answering profiles because I am not old enough(!!) or fat enough(!!) for some people's tastes!
I think that is fantastic!! It shows that there are people who specifically desire types who have always been called undesirable. Because of these Web sites, I feel I have gotten older at the perfect time in history.

The problem for me with getting older are some physical problems and unfortunately I am in an area that worships youth. Oddly, I don't remember it being so bad forty years ago. I know I never had a problem with older men but now even online I run up against it. Always surprises me when I am on sight dedicate to daddies there eighteen year olds wanting eighteen to twenty five. I want to scream hey dummy this is a daddy sight. Also the number of men who stop their age range at fifty five to sixty and I mean men over forty. I am lucky lately I have a twenty three year old who likes me. In fact, he approached me and he is local. He flat states he doesn't want the younger ones since they all seem to want him to spend money on them.
I have been told flat out that I was too old. Wish I could be here when they hit my age.

The problem for me with getting older are some physical problems and unfortunately I am in an area that worships youth. Oddly, I don't remember it being so bad forty years ago. I know I never had a problem with older men but now even online I run up against it. Always surprises me when I am on sight dedicate to daddies there eighteen year olds wanting eighteen to twenty five. I want to scream hey dummy this is a daddy sight. Also the number of men who stop their age range at fifty five to sixty and I mean men over forty. I am lucky lately I have a twenty three year old who likes me. In fact, he approached me and he is local. He flat states he doesn't want the younger ones since they all seem to want him to spend money on them.
I have been told flat out that I was too old. Wish I could be here when they hit my age.

Don't know why my words of wisdom(lol) posted twice. Tried to delete one of them. Sorry

when more and more people getting old ,then more daddy to be choose.

I have had more fun in my fifties I am 52 and embrace my aging, no fear here!!

As a 62 year old, I can say I don't "fear" it, I just have to look at our culture differently. We're not young tyros anymore.

What I find most pathetic is 40-50-60 year olds:
1. Dying their hair (facial and head). Get real. No one over 40 doesn't have some gray. And why the penchant for black? It shouts, "look a me, I'm using shoe polish." Not to mention after repeated applications it turns your skin an off-maroon color. So you have a grey/white moustache. Embrace it
2. Dressing like a 20-something. A&F T-shirts? Poured into Diesel jeans? Nuff said, you look ridiculous (and you're not fooling anyone).

I could go (and on). Thank you.

I'd agree on the A&F shirts (but then I'd be happy never to see an A&F anything ever again).

But I'll be the first to admit that I enjoy the sight of a 60, 70, or even 80 year old man who, if he's still got the muscles and body for it, "poured" himself into a pair of Diesel jeans or leather pants before stepping out (particularly if he's got a big long cock snaking halfway down one thigh!).

I am 62 and if there is one regret I have, it's all the time I wasted when I was in my 20's,30's and 40s worrying about getting old.

Yeah, it's different world, but I see things now I never saw before and feel things I never felt before, like passion being replaced by compassion and a sense of the future being replaced by a far stronger sense of the present. When I was in college I read King Lear and really didn't see the point. Now it's a powerful story of aging, loss and love.

Physically, the body is different. But thankfully the power of physical attraction wanes, although you can still disinterestedly appreciate how hot someone is. But now you discover new physical pleasures,and the whole sensation of touching becomes far different and more important.

But what draws you closer now is what you experience in the person, their mind, their sense of humor and outlook on life and their sense of themselves as part of the human race.

Yeah, there are more aches and pains etc, but compared to emotional aches and pains I had when young, they're really nothing.

My grandmother had a saying, "For every person you loved, you get a winkle on your face."

In today's world, there are plenty of legitimate things for every man (or woman) to be concerned about. Poverty or joblessness. Illness or crippling injury. Random acts of violence (be they directed at oneself, one's family, or loved ones). Congressional inanity. The NSA.

Heck, on some days a glance at the WSJ makes WW III look like something to be worried about! So, yes, there's definitely no shortage of various misfortunes in life that might be cause for fear of concern.

But getting older? What? Somebody here really prefers the alternative? (Because the only alternative to aging is to be found six feet under). Look, if dying young and leaving a pretty corpse is your thing...

Otherwise, relax, take god care of your health, accept that life often changes, enjoy and celebrate each birthday - and every once in a while whatever you do don't follow the news.

I don't fear getting older, I'm confronting it. I keep active by doing a lot of walking and yoga a few times a week. I wish more of us "out" Latinos would let go the perceived guilt of being gay and realize that in being gay gave us more options. I bring this up because I see too many single gay Latinos acting as id they need to apologize for being who they are.

Thanks for this info. I live in San Diego and belong to a group called Fellowship of Older Gays (FOG). There are those that are in the 40's that are "senior chasers". For the most part now that I am older, at least I have the experience behind me. You can have a fun time with others and should have fun times with older and younger men. My other situation is that I am a long time survivor of being HIV+ for over twenty five years. That automatically throws up the red flag but I am in good health and some of the younger guys take it in stride and know how to play safe. Those are the guys you want to meet up with.

Another factor is that as I was getting older I was meeting other older men. A good percentage were from a Straight marriage and have children. So if you are older and already have children, then meeting another person with children it is a great experience.

Older men do live and getting older does not mean you have to be scared of getting there.

I am welcoming getting older as I know things in better perspective and the gays in my area are looking much worse for their ages. It is all about how your attitude and maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Eat Right workout and less stress are the foundation of living a good life. Most of the guys younger than me are are far worse shape and guys older than me are trying to be something they are not in the Dallas Texas metroplex.

As a 66 year old I love being comfortable in my own skin and not caring too much about others opinions nor the ageism of the young. There are many who like older guys and if you respect yourself then they will respect and love you. I like being relaxed about life and not worrying about whether I can still pull guys or not as there is always someone who likes you as you are. BY the way there are a number of new young members on this site who prefer guys aged 18-30. I don't know why you are on this site. Please go to Manhunt or the many other sites that cater for the young seeking similar brigade. Thank you.

Mentally I feel great ; no more fear , no more bullshit , no more games , etc. The problem is physical ; I feel sometimes like an old car falling apart. When I get up in the morning I'm in my twenties , but when I look at myself in the Mirror , wham ! , reality strikes. I definitely would prefer to be Young physically. The fruits are ok , but I think I prefer the flowers...

I AM older: 62.
The way I see it, I'm ahead of the curve. I grew up in a time very different than this one, when going to school, the worst worry was acne. When nobody worried about a classmate shooting them (GOD, am I glad not to be young now). When, at 16, you still possessed the nearly non-existent trait of innocence (another lost - and disastrous - extinction-level virtue). I DID, however, have to worry about racism and where it was safe for me to be - and not to be. So I learned to be aware, when others had visions of the prom dancing in their heads.

Suddenly (and those my age know how fast we reached 60: those of you who are younger should know that life goes so fast, you'll be oldER (not old), before you know it), it's a new time. Black president (I NEVER thought this would happen in my lifetime), different cultural values, gay marriage. I see the world's joys and sorrows and remember life's danger and pain when my ethnicity was not integrated (pun intended) into the fabric of society.
Of COURSE I don't fear being older. Fear's a killer in itself, and for those who live in it, life is pain and I went through that early in life.
Seeing the responses to this question is interesting. Too many people are focused on how they are viewed by others. Live INSIDE yourself, not outside. But see, that's something I learned when I was younger, so being older is just another phase of life (and, like I said, for me? WAAAY safer).
Frankly, I feel sorry for those who are younger now, who have to cope with the time that global warming is REALLY deadly.
I'm glad to be living in a time where I have seen such wonderful changes in society and how the younger generation is vastly less racist than the generation I grew up in, and gay people can get married. For me, the world is a better place than it was. The things I had to be fearful of (my life being ended prematurely ) are no longer an issue.

I'm happy with me, and have been ever since announcing to my parents I was "homosexual," in the mid 60s, and life has been a learning and growing experience. As another person said, they fear NOT being older. Age should bring insight - and perspective. Otherwise, you just got old without growing up. That's what one should fear.

Does age have to matter? Perhaps only in our heads. Yes, there are the young pricks that are rude to older gays, but they have some rough lessons coming up in their lives, karma always comes back.
I have a good friend who is 82, former University director of the theater department and still incredibly active in local theaters. He has two, yes 2, young lovers, both in their 40's. Very sweet to see the three of them together.