Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Over The Hill? Fuck That Noise

"Always remember... NEVER ask a woman her age." Mom, circa 1985

Who in the fuck made it a rule that we can't ask a woman's age? Not only is it perfectly acceptable to ask a man's age, but we expect an honest answer (which most men have no problem offering up anyway). But ask a woman her age? BLASPHEMY! Why? 

Personally, I've never bought into this advice. Although I have no problem talking about my age, it kills me that, when I'm asked, the words are usually bathed in trepidation. It's assumed that I'm going to be offended by someone having the audacity to ask me such a heavy, personal question. Seriously, it's not like you're asking me how much bone I've had inside me. Just ask... I seriously don't give a fuck.

And just to set the record straight, I'm 39. In 5 months I will turn 40, and I couldn't be prouder of this upcoming milestone. My 39-year-old self is someone that I'm ridiculously proud of. I've survived a lot of bullshit, met a ton of fascinating people, traveled to some awesome places, and achieved an 800+ credit score. I overcame a lot of hurdles, gained a few pounds, educated myself, and made my way in this world using my very own brain and body. When I reflect on life in my twenties, you couldn't pay me enough to return to that life. I was stuck in a crap-tastic marriage, working a dead-end job that barely paid minimum wage, and talking myself out college because I was unsure about a major. Even though I had a smoking hot body and awesome skin tone, I never felt secure in that body. I was all over the map with my thoughts, my feelings, and every other aspect of my life. In short, I was a typical twenty-something-year-old.

Now that I am inching up to that 40-year mark, I'm reminded of my mother's own 40th birthday. She had the traditional "over the hill" party with tacky cards and decorations. She did NOT take it well; in fact, she cried for almost a week. It was as if her life was over, and many of her girlfriends felt the same way about turning 40. Why do women feel this way?

I blame our society and it's devaluation of women as they age. Women are brought up to believe that our sexual appeal is the most important thing about us (beauty pageants for dolled up 5-year-olds, anyone?). Men are assumed to want the hottest, youngest women that they can possibly get (as evidenced by those tacky late-night TV ads with women claiming they are 18 and "come play with us!"). If a woman is 35 or older while pregnant, she is considered "advanced maternal age." Also, Hollywood does a fantastic job of hiring almost exclusively young, attractive actresses to play female roles in movies and television shows. If everyone were to listen to society, women would be irrelevant once they reach that arbitrary "cougar" age.

I'm here to say FUUUUUUCK THAT NOISE. Women of every age are vital to our functioning society. Women shouldn't fear turning 40, 50, 60, or whatever is their "scary age." Women shouldn't believe that just because they don't have that smoking 20-year-old body anymore that they are worthless. Women are just as awesome as those men that everyone considers sexy with a little salt and pepper hair (and talk about double standard... there's actually men's hair color for this look!)

So go ahead, ask a woman her age, and proudly tell everyone how old you are. Be proud of your life. Women have NOTHING to hide.

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