What is the effect of ageism on your love life?
Ageism can be found anywhere, according to some gerontologists. The term describes a negative attitude toward older people, which presents itself differently. Our cultural and personal views of seniors are tainted by ageism. It occurs when persons of a specific age are seen to be “too old” to take on a new career, obtain healthcare, or even fall in love. Perhaps ageism’s most harmful feature is internalization and limited personal understandings of late-life options.
Ageism affects social professionals, too. Since our professional duty is to help vulnerable people, it is worrisome. I once asked my audience this when I was speaking at a conference for mental health experts: “How many of you inquire about romantic love with your clients as part of your evaluation process?” Two hands went up in that group of experts, and one of them was my student! “What’s the harm in that?” I asked. Some of them said that asking about love would be “unprofessional.” One of the women experts said, “We can ask clients about their main relationships, but we shouldn’t use the word “love.”
An overview of infatuation
Even at later ages, adults may feel tremendous infatuation. As per the findings of our Internet survey, individuals over the age of 50 who were in new relationships had a greater level of romantic passion than their younger counterparts. Whenever I talk about infatuation, I remember Barbara, an 83-year-old lady I interviewed. Barbara, a friendly woman filled with vitality, became deeply fascinated at 79. She had met a funny, kind man who made her laugh. She was seen skipping down the street with her beloved, singing, “I love you!” on a sunny California day.
Barbara was not alone in her feelings. “I feel like a teenager!” said several older individuals aged 64 to 88 when recalling the joy of falling in love. Infatuated older folks, like others, cherish the chance to communicate their feelings with a trusted, nonjudgmental friend. Infatuation can be dangerous, too.
Infatuation is a big deal in American culture, and it plays a big part in how we view relationships. We daydream about a relationship that starts with passion and ends with a lifetime commitment. External infatuations are strongly criticized because we expect people in committed relationships to reject all the others. However, as we all know, they do occur, and the results can be terrible.