Aging gracefully.

Essay by Vkasza December 2005

download word file, 2 pages 4.3

Gender. Race. Age. What do these all have in common? These are the three prime examples of discrimination in today's society. Although ageism is found cross-culturally, it is particularly prevalent in America. While most believe ageism is specifically targeted at the elderly, it can just as easily be found in adolescents. A common example of ageism would be that teenagers are immature and irresponsible, and that the elderly are frail and have the mental capability of a child.

On the ageism test, my results indicated that I have automatic preference of young people over older people. However, I believe that the test was inadequate for truly testing if I had a bias between younger and older generations. I honestly hurried through my test, and by mistake pressed the wrong button a couple of times, which made me, have an "automatic preference for young people over older people". If you are going to do a study on ageism and bias, then it would be far more accurate if it was a field study.

I am very close to my parents, and even closer to my grandparents, so the results were extremely shocking! Many of times I prefer going out with my parents and their friends, rather than going out with my friends the same age as me. During the summer, I was an intern at my mother's office (Occupational Therapist), and I often helped the elderly perform tasks to recover from an injury. By doing so, I developed a great love for helping others, and someday I hope to pursue a job as a Pharmacist.

In my home country, South Africa, aging is perceived as gaining more knowledge, not losing it. To me, age is not a big deal. However, this is partially because my boyfriend is younger than me by...