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Beacon Senior News

Are you in an age bubble?

Jul 02, 2019 01:00PM ● By Cloie Sandlin

I’ve frequently been told that I’m mature for my age. While I’m certain this statement has never been ill intended, I’m not always so quick to take it as a compliment.

Why would something like that offend me? I should take pride in the fact that people see me as responsible, dependable and trustworthy—and I do, and most of the time I am.

But “maturity” means more than just the opposite of “immaturity,” a word that’s synonymous with juvenile behavior. In fact, the word’s primary definition is “fully developed, and full-grown.”

First of all, I’m not done growing yet. Secondly, age doesn’t determine maturity, so why link the two? I believe that experience is a factor in the basis of maturity, along with emotional development, which is largely affected by our relationships and meaningful interactions with other people. It’s the lack of those associations that contributes to immature behavior.

That’s what happens when you’re in an age bubble.

According to Gen2Gen, a campaign to mobilize adults 50+ to stand with young people, if you spend all of your time with people your age and rarely engage in meaningful conversations with someone more than 20 years younger than you, you likely haven’t broken out of your bubble.

While it’s great to have friends our age that we can grow with, intergenerational contact is healthy for everyone involved. Grandparents and teachers know this first-hand. By interacting with younger people you can impart knowledge and advice that may help with self-esteem issues. In turn, they can help you stay up to date on current trends. It opens up a new way of thinking for both of you.

I have several friends—really good friends—who are 20+ years older than me. I learn from them constantly. I’m a well rounded, more experienced, and more mature adult because of them.

Oh, and just because you spend time with your grandkids doesn’t mean you’re off the hook! Interacting with older/younger family members doesn’t count.

I don't live in an age bubble. Do you?

Take the quiz and let me know what you think! www.generationtogeneration.org/do-you-live-in-an-age-bubble-quiz.

SENIOR DAY AT THE FAIR

Win cash prizes at BEACON Bingo, show off your creative talents and meet some cool people at this year’s Senior Day at the Mesa County Fair. Cool off in the BEACON tent with live music and free activities from 11 a.m.-4 p.m. and get yourself some fair food from vendors offering $5 lunch specials for those 55 and older.

And come say hi! I’ll be in the line for the funnel cakes.