Posted by: tabliope | November 23, 2011

Middle-Age –

Recently I’ve been thinking more and more about being middle-aged; if I’m honest, I mean I’ve thinking more about myself  and how I feel about being middle-aged.  I know all the stuff about it being a state of mind and being as old as you feel and all these things that people say  but when you get down to it, you’re still middle-aged and there’s a downward slide approaching.  Several years ago I remember some older friends of mine suddenly being so old and I couldn’t quite work out what had happened.  That certainly wasn’t going to happen to me and I was perfectly sure of that in the same way that I was perfectly sure that if I had had children they wouldn’t have been sat in front of the telly with a bag of sweets.  No, I was going to be entirely different and would break the mould.  Except here I am dithering about turning off the lights and finding my keys and checking that I switched the heating off and I’ve turned into my mother.  My middle-aged mother.

Middle-aged is never really used as a compliment especially not if you’re a woman.  I know that I’ve used it to be derogatory about behaviour that I think is a bit slow or sensible.  I joked about knowing that I was middle-aged because I was buying shoes for comfort and not style but that’s not entirely true.  I do have my comfy shoes that I wouldn’t have been seen standing next to , far less wearing, when I was twenty  but I still have shoes that my hips regret.  The thing I hate the most is that I think I feel either invisible or patronised.

I googled ‘positive images of middle-aged women’ and this is what I got.  I’d heard the term ‘cougar‘  before (I think it’s mostly used in the US, isn’t it?) but I’d never really bothered to look at what it meant, exactly but I think it’s a shocking term.  I like that they refer to ‘wearing of animal print clothing by older and more sexually aggressive women’ just as I’ve bought a grey, animal print, silk scarf.  (It looks better than my description).  It’s odd that I never found the expression ‘being Mrs Robinson’ offensive in the same way that I find the cougar expression.  Perhaps it’s my loathing of adopting Americanisms or maybe it’s one more example of being middle-aged.









  1. I hate ‘cougar’ too – reducing women to animals who want to pounce on young men. There’s no male equivalent.

    There’s an American show called Cougartown, which I think is basically Courtney Cox despairing that her life is over now she’s 40, and deciding she can only revive it by hooking up with 20-something men. If she was a male lead, we’d just be asked to accept his younger partner – it wouldn’t be the entire thrust of the storyline.


  2. yes.

    Sadly I think my mind has wandered and I seem to have lost the point of what I was writing. I’m going to come back to it.

  3. I’m saying nothing about dashing about the flat looking for the keys one morning. And finding them in the fridge.

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