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Old 07-24-2014, 09:37 AM
 
4,343 posts, read 6,057,486 times
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We're relevant to each other. We know the grandkids will 'outgrow' us. It happens. Even being the introvert I am, I've managed to be a contributor to our local news rag, we've made a few new friends and biggest surprise was when an old, old best friend moved from interstate and now lives a few miles away.

Our plans for when the grandkids outgrow us is to expect nothing. The burden will be on us to travel to their ballgames, be a spectator, share a nod, maybe a hug if so lucky, then fill the rest of our day with living our lives.

It is difficult to make new friends as we get older. I prefer the comfort of old friends. I find if I speak my mind (gently so) I attract like-minded people to me. If I put on a Stepford front then I get Stepford wives. Be yourself, do what you like. Smile a lot and leave the house. That's about all I have to offer.
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Old 07-24-2014, 09:55 AM
 
Location: Florida -
8,764 posts, read 10,843,052 times
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'Relevant' is a funny word. It's being used in this thread to describe "being recognized by and important to other people". In another context often associated with aging, it is used to describe, "being in touch with ongoing events and ideas." Many young people often view 'older' people as irrelevant, while many older people also view younger people and their music, ideas, dress, etc. 'irrelevant.'

Everyone, regardless of age, wants to be recognized by others and feel appreciated. Most people are very good at this when it comes to children, but, not so good when it comes to adults. Many ALF/SNF facilities are filled with elderly people who are literally 'starving' for a little respect and a human touch. In response, they generally show great appreciation for the 'relevance' of those who share those simple things. ---

In general, anyone who treats others with respect and appreciation, quickly discovers their own sense of true 'relevance'. On the other hand, those who only wait for others to make them feel 'relevant' --- often grow sad and depressed by feelings of 'irrelevance'
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Old 07-24-2014, 09:58 AM
 
29,779 posts, read 34,867,277 times
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A decline in relevance can be like a Visa moment-Priceless.
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Old 07-24-2014, 10:44 AM
 
Location: Conroe, Texas
62 posts, read 70,600 times
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I strongly agree with the posters who state that "validation and relevance comes from within".

At my stage in life, it's an imposition for other human beings to "need" me. If I'm capable of meeting my own needs, so should they. I have already validated myself by raising my children to be self-reliant and confident. My career in public service opened my eyes to the fact that the more public service you provide, the more service the public requires.

I find my greatest satisfaction is helping nature be as it should be - healthy and thriving.

peep
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Old 07-24-2014, 10:46 AM
 
98 posts, read 101,015 times
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I don't think wanting to be relevant to people is somehow being less "self actualized". Ultimately we want to be contributing in some way, and see our lives moving along a purposeful vector. For some, this is a creative venture (writing a book, taking up art classes, finally enrolling in that acting class you've fantasized about). For others, this is about connecting and being helpful/useful to people.

To OP, you may want to check out Marlo Thomas's "It Ain't Over..." book. It's relatively new and I borrowed a copy from the library. It has stories of women who have gotten on new adventures once they're "retired" and can be applicable to men AND women. I wasn't happy about the superficial treatment of each story but I know that's a trade off considering the # of people profiled in her book. You may find some interesting paths and ideas, and at the very least, get a sense of new ways to remain relevant or even become relevant in new ways you've never imagined.
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Old 07-24-2014, 10:49 AM
 
Location: Glenbogle
730 posts, read 1,027,323 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jertheber View Post
I don't care that the movies I watch are not in vogue, I don't seek to be in the "loop" per se, I live as one who has gotten old should live--- on the outside of popular culture. The American infatuation with being "busy" is simply humorous on it's face, but on closer scrutiny there seems to be a certain pathos connected to this focus on activity as being the validator of us all.

I always laugh when I see the ads in the AARP magazine depicting the forty something guy with a full head of silver dyed hair appearing as the "model" of what we old guys are supposed to look like in our sixties and beyond, no fat gut types, no balding types, no disabled types, no, the men look as if they stepped from the pages of GQ, AND, they just happen to look mighty relevant. Let me feel the irrelevancy and bask in it's anonymity, I fled the work world to find a better world, not relevancy.
Are we related? Ditto for the AARP ads featuring the perfectly coiffed and made-up "mature" woman who is out on the golf course (of course one must play golf) or playing with the grandchildren (of course one must have grandchildren).

But seriously, am I missing something about the whole "validation" thing? Guess I missed the memo when that became some sort of buzzword. Has it replaced "self-esteem" as a buzzword nowadays? I really am curious about this, because it sounds as if "validation" is being used as a euphemism for "measuring ourselves as human beings in terms of prevailing societal norms". In other words, some form of approval-seeking. Isn't that (approval-seeking) considered to be a mark of immaturity rather than the reverse? I'm not a psychologist and so maybe I'm misinterpreting.
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Old 07-24-2014, 11:22 AM
 
Location: Backwoods of Maine
7,114 posts, read 8,154,458 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TuborgP View Post
A decline in relevance can be like a Visa moment-Priceless.
Agree 100% with this. ^^^

After almost 40 years of running a trucking company where I had little time for myself and family, I am now retired and for the first time in decades, I am finally relevant to something! All of that prior working time just seems like a bad dream, now. I used to look out my truck windows and watch other people doing interesting things, but was never able to, myself. Now I can - and I do!

I think the OP is just bored. It's temporary, trust me...
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Old 07-24-2014, 11:25 AM
 
26,589 posts, read 52,294,382 times
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I've often wondered what it would be like to be bored... said in all sincerity.

Bored was never allowed in my family... when the Grand kids started saying they were bored... I told them to never let Grandmother hear you say that... she always has chores for you to do!

Last edited by Ultrarunner; 07-24-2014 at 12:20 PM..
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Old 07-24-2014, 11:36 AM
 
Location: Chicago area
14,391 posts, read 7,923,957 times
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Find some new hobbies like roller skating or skiing. We skate with people 20+ years older then us and they're amazing. It's a big social event for them and some of them meet up several times a week at different rinks. Join a biking club. When I work doubles and leave for home at 730 am I see a group of seniors riding their bikes. They look really fit and like they're having fun. It makes killing my self with working all these hours feel like I have no life. I know it's difficult to make friends in new towns but it's not impossible. I'm surprised your old friends don't come and visit you in your new location. I want to retire in vacation land (Maine) and I hope I have company at least 4 or 5 times a year. If we don't then I'll have to let my imagination work over time. PS: What's wrong with having a cat or three? You can find some one to check on them every other day. There are so many loving animals being destroyed because of the I don't want to be inconvenienced when I travel once a year mentality. What about the other 51 weeks when they give you nothing but love?
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Old 07-24-2014, 12:46 PM
 
1,769 posts, read 2,442,833 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by peep531 View Post
I strongly agree with the posters who state that "validation and relevance comes from within".

At my stage in life, it's an imposition for other human beings to "need" me. If I'm capable of meeting my own needs, so should they. I have already validated myself by raising my children to be self-reliant and confident. My career in public service opened my eyes to the fact that the more public service you provide, the more service the public requires.

I find my greatest satisfaction is helping nature be as it should be - healthy and thriving.

peep

well said !!!!
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