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Age is one of the factors used by societies to dictate various roles, practices, moral values, and social interactions. People of a particular age bracket are expected to focus on specific roles. For example, individuals “between 13 and 19 years are known as teenagers” (Schniter and Shields 2014:21). The society expects its teenagers to focus on their studies. They should also have good morals. Individuals at the age of 60 and above are referred to as the elderly. Aging is, therefore, “a mandatory biological process that is experienced by all creatures” (Raina and Balodi 2014:734). This discussion clearly shows how societies use “age” and “aging.”
The chronological age makes a huge difference in the life of every individual. The term chronological age refers “to the age of a human being from the day of his or her birth” (Schniter and Shields 2014:21). This kind of age “is measured in years, months, and days” (Schniter and Shields, 2014:23). Chronological age dictates the experiences, changes, and health problems experienced by different individuals. Age is a risk factor associated with various health complications and diseases. Many people also focus on their chronological ages in order to achieve their potentials in life. This fact explains why chronological age can make a huge difference in a person’s life. Many elderly people are expected to focus on specific duties and activities. Such “individuals might also disengage themselves from various social responsibilities” (Schniter and Shields 2014:23).
Effects of Age on My Employment
The society has unique definitions of age. This definition has affected my life directly. Recently I was looking for a new job in order to have a small income. The majority of the potential employers believed strongly that I lacked the required skills to complete specific tasks. They strongly believed that I was young and incompetent. I have also been denied various services because of my age. This fact explains why many societies “fix age with certain values and meanings” (Raina and Balodi 2014:735). My grandfather has faced different forms of discrimination because of his old age. The elderly usually face discrimination in their respective communities. Young people in society treat the aged as incompetent and weak individuals.
Social Theories on Aging
Many societies embrace various social theories on aging. For example, the disengagement theory (DT) treats the elderly as individuals who cannot complete various tasks. They are also seen “as antisocial persons who are unable to interact with other members of the society” (Wurtele 2009:1027). Studies indicate that many people in different Western countries use different chemicals in order to appear younger. Some societies are undertaking positive measures to support the social positions of the elderly (Schniter and Shields, 2014).
I strongly believe that our society will accord more esteem and value to the elderly in the future. This is the case because many social theories continue to support the aged in society. For instance, the Activity Theory (AT) encourages these senior citizens to engage in various activities. Many elderly citizens are also getting better health services and care from different government agencies. The youths are getting new ideas and guidelines from the elderly (Raina and Balodi 2014). This development shows clearly that society continues to support many senior citizens. However, many young citizens have been stereotyping the elderly. It might take decades before achieving the above goal. The government should, therefore, use powerful measures to support the needs of these senior citizens.
Raina, Divya, and Geeta Balodi. 2014. “Ageism and Stereotyping of the Older Adults.” Scholars Journal of Applied Medical Services 2(2):733-739. Web.
Schniter, Eric, and Timothy Shields. 2014. “Ageism, Honesty, and Trust.” Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics 51(1):19-29. Web.
Wurtele, Sandy. 2009. “Activities of Older Adults Survey: Tapping into Student Views of the Elderly.” Educational Gerontology 35(1):1026-1031. Web.