I've written a number of blog posts about ageism and its impact on Boomers. Ageism happens in both obvious and subtle ways. The older you get, the more you may notice that you feel either overlooked by society or even invisible in their eyes. You are not being paranoid. The messages and signals that surround you are incontrovertible.
- Younger people may be dismissive.
- Retail store clerks may call you "honey" or "dear."
- People demonstrate impatience and frustration if you seem to have trouble hearing or understanding them.
- Finding clothes to fit your older body is challenging.
- Advertising on television is largely geared to the young, and those ads that include "gray hairs" are inevitably pitching drugs for serious ailments.
- Your employer thinks nothing of letting you go because of your age, despite your years of service, experience and expertise.
According to an article in Business Insider, three million older workers can't find high-paying jobs because of ageism.
These kinds of indignities are suffered on a daily basis by those over the not-so-old age of 65. It's ageism, and it's discriminatory.
We need more people, organizations, and politicians fighting against ageism. I've mentioned an organization called Respectful Exits in the past. Respectful Exits works with employers to change the view of older employees by instituting a "Longevity Agenda." AARP offers a special section on its website called "Working at 50+" that has information for older workers.
You should definitely check out a new ageism clearinghouse started by Ashton Applewhite, an anti-ageism activist. It's called Old School and it is a free ageism resource center with tools, books, blogs, podcasts and more.
Boomers are some 74 million strong. The more we all speak out against ageism, the more our society will begin to respect us. Everyone gets older -- and ageism will happen to all of them someday if we don't stop it now!