Care and keeping of old men

We’ve been thinking recently about men aging and talking with friends about various aspects of the subject. We know we generally focus on ourselves in this forum, but thought we’d shift our lens for a moment for a wider view of our lives, and open the conversation for your thoughts.

Many women our age are widowed, but many still have men in their lives, or remember spouses, partners, fathers, brothers and friends. 

Here are some questions that have been raised:

Do personalities prevail, or do they alter with the aging process?

Do men face different issues than women as they age?

How do men spend their time as physical changes effect them?

How do relationships shift in later years?

What issues do caregivers face?

We hope you’ll add more topics and share what you think.

What has been your experience? Okay to write anonymously if you want to write otherwise private thoughts.

We look forward to an interesting conversation.

Jane and Ellen

This entry was posted in 70candles, Adaptations and accommodations as we age, Aging, Attitudes about aging, Family matters, Men aging and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Care and keeping of old men

  1. Blog Mavens says:

    A very moving story from the Sunday New York Times about caregiving and enduring love, even in the face of a fading mind.

  2. Blog Mavens says:

    Old Men

    Dear Jane and Ellen,

    In my totally unscientific polling of some men 70-80, here’s what I gleaned:

    –One man who retired a year ago: “I feel as though I should find something productive to do, but I’m not trying too hard. I don’t feel as though there’s anything missing.” Another man did confess to feeling aimless and a little bored, but seemed incapable of making things happen after a lifetime of having the structure of an office.

    –A man told me, “My personality has changed since I’ve retired, I not as impatient; I’m more accepting of people foibles. I’m also not as task oriented. Still another said, “I’m also more laid back and less likely to go off on someone. I guess I can laugh at myself more.”

    –A man told me, “When I retired the people I worked with disappeared. I had to develop friendships on my own for the first time. I pushed myself and now I have–probably for the first time–a nice circle of male friends independent of my wife’s social arrangements.” Another said, “I used to do things, physical things, with my friends and the conversations were pretty superficial. Now we do more reporting in, and I must say we’re going down deeper. The things we share are more personal, more revealing, more intimate.

    –A man said that his relationship with his wife was much better without the stresses of work and kids. He said he was more appreciative of her.

  3. mary hirsch says:

    Why not ask a man? A woman can only give you her PERCEPTION…

    As a woman having been brought up with four(4) brothers (2 older, 2 younger, with me in the middle), a dad, several uncles and grandfathers, I have come to know men rather well, understand them completely (“where they’re coming from”) and preferred their own company – to this day. I was (and still am) a Tomboy, athletic and most of my friends are men: they say what they mean and they mean what they say. They bottom line. No games; no backstabbing.

    Men are all about competition and power, respecting the one who has the most – whether skill or power, and once the “leader” of the pack is established, they back him up and work their buns off and challenge themselves to get him off the pedestal because men thrive on competition.

    Men’s ego is fragile and they are natural hunters: they want to WORK for what they get: the biggest turn on word is “NO!” and a woman who is not “easy to get” is the biggest challenge because they RESPECT her.

    This is just a tip of the iceberg… so please go to the source: ask a man, or men.

    The one thing I can tell you for sure, is that when a man’s most priced possession (his penis) is threatened, old, shriveled and can’t perform the way it used to, they get bitter, nasty and mean. Unlike us women who deal with our sexuality differently, men don’t get “feely-touchy,” philosophical or accepting.

    A typical man would never admit this unless you’ve had a buddy-buddy relationship with them as I have had… and even then…. for they are FRAGILE, if the most lovable creatures ever.

    Ask a successful, high-class prostitute about men. She knows them better than anyone else because men typically trust her and pour their hearts out to her; sex is secondary.

    Good luck!

  4. Jeanne says:

    I have been married 50 years this month. We are 71 years of age each. Been together since 16 years old. We are pretty much the same persons. He is a lot easier to get along with, which I believe because he had less testosterone and more estrogen. I still spoil him. And he still takes care of me and gets a little jealous. We have 3 children and nine grandchildren who live near us. He is not as active as myself. I am old school and I still do all the shopping cooking and cleaning. I retired at almost 70 and still did it all. His work place shut down when he was 61 and he has been retired from that time. Many of my friends are widowed or divorced so I cherish the time we still have. We are both God loving God fearing people.

  5. Mary Lou says:

    I’m currently in a relationship with a man who is 9 years older than me. That makes him 86 and me 77. 🙂 I’m pleasantly surprised to find him determined to make the best of physical set backs and to continue to strive to be independent. He was married 54 years and I was married 20. My marriage ended with my husband deserting the family. When I consider the personalities of both of these men, they are totally different. I feel heard and supported by him. He has my support and love. Neither one of us can be a caregiver yet in the day to day need for encouragement and love we’re there for each other. Each relationship has different needs depending on each person’s situation. Each man is different in their approach to aging just as each woman is.

  6. Blog Mavens says:

    In the pool just now thinking of my dad and his many stays in the hospital in his later years. He just wanted a radio to listen to his basketball and baseball games. It blocked out all the hospital sounds and sights for him, and transported him to better times.
    I remember he always brought along his Fabergré toilet water to counter the hospital smells. On one of our visits, he smiled mischievously at my sister and me as he directed us to bring some Fabergé to his sick buddy in the next room and apply it to his neck.
    As ever, trying to bring some cheer to the next guy.

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