The Elsa Kurt Show

Decoding 'You Look Good for Your Age': A Journey from Ageism to Acceptance

September 04, 2023 Elsa Kurt
The Elsa Kurt Show
Decoding 'You Look Good for Your Age': A Journey from Ageism to Acceptance
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Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Ever been told, "You look good for your age," and wondered if it's a compliment or a subtle jab? Let's embark on a journey together and tackle this age-old (pun intended!) question. We'll take a trip down memory lane, examining how society's perception of women in their 50s has evolved from the 70s, 80s, and 90s up to today. We're going to have a lively chat about perceptions, beauty standards, and the often enigmatic relationship between age and compliments. 

In the second half of our discussion, we're going to put the magnifying glass on that statement - "You look good for your age." Is it a sincere compliment, or is it veiled ageism? Let's dive into our thoughts about how age standards have morphed through the years and how this change has impacted perceptions of age. The same age can look vastly different from person to person, so let's explore how we can reframe our mindset to embrace these comments as the sincere compliments they're meant to be. We encourage everyone listening to join the conversation and share your personal experiences on the subject.

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Speaker 1:

Hello there. So I have a question for you. You ready for it? I want to know what you think when you hear this statement. You ready for it? You look good for your age. What do you think about that? Does it bother you? Is it a compliment? Is it insult? I bring this up because I was out recently with some friends and a person who was not part of our group, that doesn't know us, asked one of my friends how old they were and she said I'm 56. And the other person said Wow, you look really good for your age. And that sparked a whole conversation and a mixed bag of opinions and you know I had to really think about it. I'm like I don't know. First of all, I'm pretty unflappable. There isn't a lot that you can phase me with or bother me with or certainly not offend me with. You know you can take some guesses how I feel about people being offended by, by words and things. I mean that's. You know it's just silly to me. So you know I mean. So I guess, right off the bat I'm like I don't care. I mean I'm going to take it as a compliment because I want to look good for me. My age I want to look good for any age that I'm at. I want to look, you know, as as good as I can. I want to look my personal best, which my personal best may be better or worse than somebody else's personal best. But you know, I don't really think we should be comparing, even though we do. We do, we're just human, we can't help it. And if I see a woman that is will will go with older than me, if I see a woman in her 60s, I'm 50. I'm turning 52 next month. So if somebody says to me, hey, you look really good for your age, I'm taking it as a compliment. I feel like it's a compliment. I don't think it's an insult. Now there's a. You know the actress. Her name is Angela Bassett. She's been around for a long time, long time. She has a beautiful, stunning woman. Again, she's beautiful at any and every age, that. So I guess what her point is is that you don't need the, the qualifier, or technically, they're calling it a backhanded insult. So do you think it's a backhanded insult? I, I guess maybe. Maybe it is, but it's certainly an unintentional one. It's not a malicious one. I don't think anybody says that with a like a malicious intent, you know, with that snarky for your age Tone in their voice, I think it's like, I think it's a genuine wow. But here is let's see if I can find it here is what what she had to say about it here. Oh, I hear that a lot. I don't like this either. It's a backhanded compliment. Right right, you look good for your age, you know, with that look in the eye, oh my God, I'm just shocked. You just, you just feel like, oh my God, I should look like a troll, a wish, with a quick nose and you know. And my face skin should be like dripping off my face and my blood should be as wide as a scout. What? And you look bad for my age? Oh my God. It's not a compliment. He was like thank you, I don't know. I mean, I guess you could look at it that way and see it that way and perceive it that way and maybe you wouldn't be wrong. But I'm just feeling like I don't know, maybe it's just my personality type, that I'm just like, whatever you just told me, I look good, I'll run with that. I'll run with that part of it, thank you. I don't take offense to being told for your age, because I think what people are doing like I know this for myself, so have you ever? I have, I've seen it a bunch of times, especially recently. I'm going to try and throw up a few images here. But when I personally think about women in their 50s, from when I was a kid, like from the 70s, from the 80s, oh, my God, even from the 90s what years were the Golden Girls on? I need to find this out. I'm gonna check it out. So let's use that as a reference, because there is a meme that has gone around of a picture of the Golden Girls with their ages at the time, or at least their character's ages at the time of that show, of that series, and it was a little stunning and I'm gonna show it to you. I'm gonna hunt it down, show it to you. So here it is. Yeah, so when I think about the fact that I'm turning 52 and they were in that age range at that time, I mean we are not the same and I'm not like patting myself on the back, I'm not saying I look great or anything like that at all, just saying we look really different and part of the theory is the hairstyles. So you have to check this out. Thank you for being a friend. Travel down the road and back again. Your heart is true, you're a pal and a convedom, and if you threw a party, you invited everyone to know, you would see, the biggest gift would be from me and the card attached would say thank you for being a friend. Okay, so there's something to that, right, and, of course, a lot of different things. Way less of us. Less of us, yeah, our smoking cigarettes, right, we were more conscious of our health and our appearance. Not just that they didn't care about their appearance, it was just different. It was just very different. Different times, different motivations, different beauty standards too. Things change over the years. So I guess, when some. I guess my only point being is that we're not the same. My only point being is that when somebody says to you, wow, you look really good for your age, they're comparing it to a standard that they remember from their childhood, probably, or from their youth. That like, wow, when I thought of you know, and we do stay locked in our young minds in some ways. Right, I mean, we mature and all those things, but there's certain things I think that we stay locked in on, and I think that's one of them. Like it's our default setting that when we think about certain ages, we have this automatic picture in our mind. Usually it's our own grandparents at the same age. You know, when I think of gosh, I'm thinking my grandparents. They were both in their 60s when they passed, and my grandmother was a young in early 60s, so we think she never actually told us her real age. But you know, for example, I look at my husband, who is 60, and it's like, wow, that's what 60 looks like now, interesting, that's very interesting. But then you see 60 on somebody else and you're like, whoa, that's a big difference. You're 60 and you're 60 are so different, so different. So, all in all, I think asking the question or making the statement of you look good for your age my personal opinion is not an insult. It's the compliment that it's meant to be. Take it as such, say thank you and move on. But I really wanna know do you think it's a compliment or a backhanded insult? So let me know.

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