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So it happened, someone referred to me as...


bettyandbob
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The Older Lady

I don't understand. My hair is not gray or even starting to gray. I'm not 70. I am 49.

I guess the fact is this was at my second job (swim instructor), where I am surrounded by 20 year olds.

BUT I don't want that to be my identifying characteristic.

Bummed.

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At least they didn't say "the old lady".

 

Anybody can be 'older'. If there is a group of kids playing together, say, a bunch of 6yos and a 10yo, then you could refer to the 10yo as "the older kid".

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Oh, and if you don't want people to refer to you as "the older lady", then maybe an option would be to give them something else that would be easy to point to. Like, have blue/pink/green hair or something. Unless of course everyone else around you has hair like that.

 

And repeat after me: I love getting older, and all the wisdom and experience I've gained in the process.

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Try going back to college.  I DO have gray hair.  It was really weird to me because in most of my social circles, I'm the youngest of the group.  Then suddenly I'm in an environment where even the professors refer to me as Ms. Apryl because they are unsure if I'm older than them or not..lol.

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I dye my hair.  

 

I saw one of those stupid makeover shows years ago, geared toward someone wanting to look professional, and of all things she did, dyeing over her gray hair made the most dramatic change/improvement.  So a few years back I started doing this.  Now, just to set the stage, I haven't had a hair cut in over 20 years.  It drives the hair colorist crazy that I won't let her cut it.  But I have hair that always looks best when it's long.

 

I tell the hair person--"I want to look like myself, only better.  I don't want to look like I had my hair colored.  I want to look natural, but not gray-haired."  So she uses 4 colors that are close to each other, and it works out great.  WEP.

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I'm tall (5'11ish) but I was always pretty slim, up through my 30s.  My mom (a very direct German woman) always told me "tall is beautiful, just don't ever get fat or you'll look like a football player"  In my 40's I've put on some weight.  I'm not overweight, but at the upper end of the normal range, and not particularly *slim* any more.

 

Someone referred to me as "the big girl"  :glare:  I've always been "the tall girl" or "the blonde girl".  Now I'm "the big girl"?  Ugh.  

 

Side note, I do believe in coloring hair.  I'm 48, and have a few friends who stopped coloring, and they really look much older.

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I'm tall (5'11ish) but I was always pretty slim, up through my 30s.  My mom (a very direct German woman) always told me "tall is beautiful, just don't ever get fat or you'll look like a football player"  In my 40's I've put on some weight.  I'm not overweight, but at the upper end of the normal range, and not particularly *slim* any more.

 

Someone referred to me as "the big girl"  :glare:  I've always been "the tall girl" or "the blonde girl".  Now I'm "the big girl"?  Ugh.  

 

Side note, I do believe in coloring hair.  I'm 48, and have a few friends who stopped coloring, and they really look much older.

 

I've gotten that one too.  Standing right there and some old guy was talking about someone he knew..."She was a big gal" he looks over at me "Like you" and kept right on going without realizing how close he was to getting kicked...lol.

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OK I'm a little overweight. I guess I prefer "older lady" to "bigger" or similar. I know they are just try to describe me. The truth is on Saturday morning I am at least 20 years older than every other instructor. So, even though I have no gray and don't need to dye my hair being older is the characteristic that sets me apart from the group quickly. 

 

It just stings. 

 

I never want to hear anyone call me a "big girl" even though I am above average height, have muscular legs and arms and am a little overweight. I just don't want to hear that. 

 

It's silly, but being called "older lady" by an adult (this was a parent looking for me, not a child) feels like a not so great milestone. I've passed some threshold and am actually old. Can't wait for my next birthday. 

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I dye my hair.

 

I saw one of those stupid makeover shows years ago, geared toward someone wanting to look professional, and of all things she did, dyeing over her gray hair made the most dramatic change/improvement. So a few years back I started doing this. Now, just to set the stage, I haven't had a hair cut in over 20 years. It drives the hair colorist crazy that I won't let her cut it. But I have hair that always looks best when it's long.

 

I tell the hair person--"I want to look like myself, only better. I don't want to look like I had my hair colored. I want to look natural, but not gray-haired." So she uses 4 colors that are close to each other, and it works out great. WEP.

This is how I do it, too. I have highlights put in, then a toner color. It does not look like a bottle-job.

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I've gotten that one too. Standing right there and some old guy was talking about someone he knew..."She was a big gal" he looks over at me "Like you" and kept right on going without realizing how close he was to getting kicked...lol.

Holy heck! That is just evil!

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The Older Lady

 

I don't understand. My hair is not gray or even starting to gray. I'm not 70. I am 49.

 

I guess the fact is this was at my second job (swim instructor), where I am surrounded by 20 year olds.

 

BUT I don't want that to be my identifying characteristic.

 

Bummed.

 

I would have no problem with this.  "Older" is the comparative, not a derogatory comment. Perfectly respectful in the context.

 

Otherwise, I might be -- [disrespectfully, albeit accurately] -- described as "the old, short, dumpy one with long hair".

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I teach a class of grade 2 students. They think I am 100.. thought one student did come up to me and tell me they didn't think I was quite 100, but closer to 71. :lol:

 

I had a prek kid in my class year whose granddad brought him to school. Or so I thought. I'm glad I never spoke that thought out loud. His dad was 64.

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I had a prek kid in my class year whose granddad brought him to school. Or so I thought. I'm glad I never spoke that thought out loud. His dad was 64.

 

I took a Red Cross First Aid/CPR/AED course in January. We were taught to always ask a woman if she's is or might be pregnant before treating her for choking, regardless of whether she seems like she's 12 or 90yo, because some people have babies at crazy old ages these days (or carry them for their kids or w/e).

 

I considered adding you should also ask all the men if they are or might be pregnant, since there are more and more transmen who decide to have a baby as well. But w/e. Wondering though if the 90yos would have a WTF laughing fit that might solve the choking problem all by itself.

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I'm in the middle of an age identity. I'm also in college and my oldest friend in a class was like 30. I just turned 48. In another class there were 2 people more my age, which I didn't realize until later in the semester, thinking they were older than me. 

 

My age peers are mostly professors all with doctorates, my academic peers looking forward to their 20s. 

 

I've also consciously decided not to color my hair again until more of the grey comes in (it is quickly). My brain doesn't feel older, but my body is starting to show it. 

 

I am the older woman and I'm not sure if I'm okay with that yet. 

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I'm apparently looking old enough now that the (almost 12 and almost 13yo) kids of a fellow homeschool mom were shy to talk to me. They were supposed to return some books I'd lent them, forgot to bring them, and hid instead of telling me. That one surprised me a little. If they'd been little kids, okay, but for kids about 12yo to hide rather than tell me "sorry we forgot your books, we'll bring them next time" - did not see that coming. A couple of weeks prior to that one of them handed me a book they'd borrowed and hurried away without saying anything.

 

I'm 30, fwiw, so I'm finally out of that young adult category. I also get dizzy now doing somersaults (didn't a year ago). As my (38yo) wife says: I've caught "the old". :laugh:

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LOL!  Getting old is tough in so many ways...not just physically.

 

I had a new one just last week:  I'm 52 years old; my hair is graying and I let it go natural.  I'm 5'6" and weigh 145 lbs.  I am back in the workforce so I try to dress stylishly.  My hair is in a nice bob.  I volunteer at a free medical clinic as pharmacist.  I work with a physician who is a retired OB/GYN.  She is probably in her 70s and is a native of India.  I've also attended Yoga with her for a while.  Anyways, last week we worked together.  I was wearing a blouse that had smocking across the chest and a gathered "skirt"...kind of empire style with some black slacks.  She asked me if I was PREGNANT!

 

I was stunned!  I hesitated a moment to make sure there wasn't a follow-up punch line...no...she was serious.  Apparently my blouse was not working in my favor LOL.

 

Oh, and on the heels of that conversation, I heard about this on the news: Granny Chic Hair http://distractify.com/pinar/granny-chic/

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Granny Hair Chic: I actually have a girlfriend, late 30s, who is considering grey/white highlights...and she's pregnant. LOL. Ooooobekaaaaybe! I love her crazy ideas.

 

If I don't go salt and pepper when I get <ahem> older, I will dye my hair grey/silver. I love how classy it looks. But I'm probably thinking at least 60 for that.

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I get called "sir" often. I am tall, wear no makeup, keep my hair pulled back in no-frou-frou pony tail, usually wear jeans and a not-tight t-shirt or polo shirt in pretty basic colors (no florals for me most of the time), and usually have a ball cap on top of my head. So I get it.

 

Ds and I get a big kick from watching the store clerks and such scramble to apologize for the "sir" when they realize I'm a woman. It doesn't bother me at all.

 

I usually ask for a senior discount. Almost all fast food places have cheap drinks, at least. 

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Eh. I'm not even 30 and I work with teenagers. I've been referred to as "the older one" several times. I also get called "the mom"...which is more jarring to my ears, personally. 

 

ETA- My "eh" wasn't dismissive towards you. It's the sound I make in my head when I feel old. :) 

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Now that I'm 43, I'm more grateful than ever for my red hair. Redheads are ALWAYS described by their hair first. When I see my first white hair you all WILL hear a scream.

I'm a 44 year old redhead with some resistant whites and a new baby. Be afraid. I color, color, color, but those whites are tenacious. From a distance they look blonde. But up close, there's no denying the white. It's just a matter of time before someone takes me for his grandmother.
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Now that I'm 43, I'm more grateful than ever for my red hair. Redheads are ALWAYS described by their hair first. When I see my first white hair you all WILL hear a scream.

 

Ahem, you don't always go grey first if you are a redhead.  In my early 40s I went brownish.  I found out that I was no longer seen as 'the redhead'!  I am quite short so I have always said "you can't miss me, I am the short readhead".  Well, I had someone say "I didn't know if it was you because you are short, but you said you are a redhead and I got confused." Talk about existential crisis! Is being a redhead only a hair colour? If my hair goes drab am I not myself?

 

:svengo:

 

So, I quickly became and expert on dying my own hair, lol.

 

So if you are considering dying your hair, you might want to check some old pictures to make sure your hair is still as vibrant.

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Ahem, you don't always go grey first if you are a redhead. In my early 40s I went brownish. I found out that I was no longer seen as 'the redhead'! I am quite short so I have always said "you can't miss me, I am the short readhead". Well, I had someone say "I didn't know if it was you because you are short, but you said you are a redhead and I got confused." Talk about existential crisis! Is being a redhead only a hair colour? If my hair goes drab am I not myself?

 

:svengo:

 

So, I quickly became and expert on dying my own hair, lol.

 

 

So if you are considering dying your hair, you might want to check some old pictures to make sure your hair is still as vibrant.

My mom and I are both redheads and that happened to her, also. As she started going grey, the brightness of her red dulled. It was sad. She, also, became an expert at dying her hair!

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