Recently, I decided to think about the fact that, while aging, which hasn't traumatized me yet, I find that younger folk in some milieus feel that the age gap means that I have nothing to contribute to their lives. I should say that I "feel" this instead of "finding" this. In other words, I feel that I become obsolete around some people only because of my age.
Working in other entourages, in other areas, age makes little difference as far as having interaction with my younger peers. I have fun with my elders, they have fun with me. At the same time, I have fun with my younger peers while they have fun with me. We all find each other legitimate and significant.
I don't know if it's the gray hairs that poke through my light brown hairs or the fact that I place more importance in other areas than these particular co-workers do. That is not to say that my focuses are better than theirs, but they are different in many areas.
The office will ring with the voices of the younger ones chattering back and forth with each other, with the public. I sit in my own pod and have different duties. I will try to join in the conversation--sometimes successfully, but usually unsuccessfully.
Do I care that they aren't talking to me? Obviously I do to some degree. Maybe it is our focuses that separate us. We get along, and quite well. But I'd like to have more meaningful communication with them.
Maybe my interests were more in step with theirs when I also was younger. Over the years, some of my interests have changed entirely or have changed in their level of importance to me. French and baseball, for example, were right up there on the scale for me years ago. Now, I've been introduced to football and I have stepchildren and grandchildren, which take precedence over the language and the slower-paced baseball.
This makes me think of my grandparents and other elderly friends who, as they age, feel less significant to others in certain ways. They can not participate physically the way they used to. The mind can become more forgetful. Their wisdom counsels them that such-and-such an activity is not the greatest idea now.
But they are still significant. There are still other interests to pursue, or the same interests they currently pursue only from a different angle or deeper perspective.
Is it possible that our society will slow down a little and communicate better with each other?
If you think that there are "generation gaps", what do you think creates them? Differences in interest? Physical and intellectual and emotional changes due to aging? Any suggestions for feedback? --Linda