Aging and the Sexes
Ronni Bennett, Timegoesby.net
Eric Kornfeld, comedy writer
Robert Kane, MD, author of It Shouldn't Be This Way
Jesse Kornbluth, Headbutler.com
Another front in the battle of the sexes - aging. Who faces it better, men or women? The Life (Part 2) conclave takes on the issue.
Dr. Robert Kane points out that aging is tough for everyone. Not only are there physiological changes, there are things to reckon with, like age discrimination and societal pressures to look young. It's the worst of all worlds - people lose their strength, their looks, and their social position.
But there are some distinct gender differences.
For one thing, women typically live longer than men. In the U.S., the average life expectancy is about 79 years for women and about 72 years for men. With advances in medicine and technology, life expectancies are sure to increase for both women and men. But most women will outlive their spouses and many will spend their final years in a state of dependency.
On the other hand, there's retirement. Of course, the labor force has changed significantly in the past forty years. Women work - and retire - just like men. The difference is that men very much define themselves by their work. When a man's job ends, he can lose a sense of self. Women are much better at establishing social networks so that when they retire, they have relationships to sustain them. As Dr. Kane says, "They quickly assimilate."
These issues, as well as age discrimination, to wrinkle or not to wrinkle, and amorous fantasies are discussed by the Life (Part 2) council of elders.