I decided to write a book called, ‘The Visible Woman – More Lust, Less Must’, because of my own experience and the experience of other women in my personal and professional life.

In my book, I mentioned the role that the media plays in the ageism view. It helps society to see us as needing something done to us so we fit in with their view of women once we reach mid-life. Also though, I said that women had to look at their role in colluding with this viewpoint.


I don’t understand how the media think that ageing is a problem to be solved. Yes, they do put some older women in the papers e.g. Dame Helen Mirren, but always with something like, ‘Look how good she is for her age!’ and then gets some expert to comment on whether she has had work done – it is just crazy!

I want to bring up what some well known women have said in the media –

The Presenter, Mariella Frostrup, claimed that ‘the unwelcome development (turning 50) had improved her ‘work-life balance’ but hit out against ageism, calling it ‘the last frontier of acceptable discrimination’…. There are plenty of forgotten women out there not so lucky’.

The Actress and Writer, Emma Thompson, who happens to be 55, was asked if 50 was the new 35. I absolutely adored her reply which was –

‘Can I just say very loudly bollocks … People wanting to be 35 when they’re 50 makes me think: Why? Why don’t you be 50 and be good at that?’

For me, she’s saying accept yourself and stop trying to be someone else!

Role Models

Isn’t it fantastic that someone comes out with her truth and doesn’t pay lip service to what the media wants. In my opinion, Emma Thompson is standing up for all women who are told to look and be younger by any means possible. She is a Role Model for generations to come. She’s not willing to enter into the game that the media, and society, are playing in the ageing process!

We will all get old – if we’re lucky to survive. I don’t know many who have not wanted the wisdom they now have to be transferred to that younger self, and still are not afraid of the ageing process.

Care for Self

It is really important that we all take care of ourselves as best we can and even within our financial constraints. It is the same tips that apply to most of life – make sure you have some daily Exercise; Drink lots of Water; watch what you are eating; Dress to suit your body; Mix with all ages; Be a Lifelong Learner; and have a good support system around you.

The best one for me is Smiling and having a real Belly laugh! We exercise more facial muscles then. People respond to someone who is smiling and laughing and take no notice of their age!


What happened to the ‘being content with yourself’? The looking in the mirror and saying, ‘I really like or love you because of your spirit regardless of any lines’.

If, as is said, we are here to further the evolution of consciousness, then why are we all hung up on the ageing process?? How is that helping our growing awareness?


We are all going to die!!! One way or another. So what are you going to do about it? Why not focus on becoming yourself – acceptance of you in all your glory? Why waste your time and money on futile things. Will you look back on your deathbed and say – well at least I made myself look younger??

No – you know you won’t. Let’s make ourselves the best we can be in order to make the world the best it can be. Who is up for that???

It’s time to give the focus on the ageing process a break. Yes, we may be frightened of getting old but the alternative is death so grow old gracefully or disgracefully.

Start by accepting and being content with who you are – as that contentment shines through to others and they respond.

Look forward to hearing from you x

As a Counselling and Coaching Psychologist who comes from a place of acceptance, contact me for a chat or sign up for my next Residential Retreat.

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18 Responses

  • Thanks for taking the time to comment, Yvette. And don’t we need more of this kind of woman????? xx

  • You’ve hit a nerve here Irene! I have lots of grey hair and can’t make the decision to embrace it. I have tried but don’t feel ready. Is that wimping out of accepting the ageing process? Perhaps! 😉

  • I can’t say the ageing process has come easily to me. Not from a point of view of worrying what I look like, but more of letting go of cherished dreams and ideals that I held about myself. I struggled the most to let go of the idea that I was ‘sporty’. Not just doing sport but extreme sport. It felt like such a large part of me I was very reluctant to accept I could no longer claim that as part of my identity because as my body ages, it simply won’t take the battering any more. I think in speaking about the ageing process, we ourselves focus on talking about physical appearance only and don’t even notice that we have been led by the nose by the media into doing that. Perhaps if women focused on a healthy mental attitude, worries about the physical would be less?

  • Thanks for sharing, Jenny. Yes, is my answer to your question and that’s why my work comes from a place of acceptance of yourself however you are and then we can face the world from our own stance. Love Irene x

  • Thanks, Sarah, for commenting. No, it’s not wimping out of the ageing process to colour your hair, in my opinion, as you are wanting to make the best of yourself and that’s your choice. It’s a bigger issue than that as the media/society seems to want everyone to be young and beautiful regardless!
    Love Irene x

  • Great post Irene! I’m 47 and have struggled since I hit 40 with ‘middle age’ stuff like tiredness, feeling more grumpy, losing my waist and not being able to run any more! What you say about looking after yourself – holistically – is SO true. I was living life like a mad 20 something and you have to adjust when you get older. I found my true purpose, went back to college, started looking after myself properly with the right diet and lifestyle, and now feel happier and healthier than I ever have. I look at my wrinkles in the mirror like each one tells a story, or has a great memory attached. It doesn’t mean I don’t want them, just helps me to accept them a bit more! I meditate every morning, which helps me feel grateful to be alive each day. I get outside for a walk in nature whenever I can – this is something I love now, but would never have done when I was younger! Our bodies change, our desires change – for me it has been for the better. I have no fear of hitting 50, in fact BRING IT ON!

  • Katrina, I love what you say – somehow I seem to have pressed the wrong button so hope you get my reply. It is all about loving yourself regardless of the media’s views or anyone else’s. Thanks for taking the time to comment xx

  • Nicki, this is what we’re about – making the most of ourself and life. You obviously smile a lot now as you love that woman in the mirror. Join the clan. xx

  • Great blog. I love this being strong in where you are right now. I take a slightly different view to the 50 is the new 30 comment to Emma. For me it is a reflection of a greater freedom. On decades past 50 was on the shelf, especially for an actress. However we are rewriting the rules, if we want to do as many things, try as many things in our 50’s as our 30’s if we want to. But we can do all these things with greater aplomb than we could have ever done when we were younger. Because in this century we have the availability to explore our nature, our happiness, who we really want to be and how we really want to live.

  • How lovely to get your comments. Oh yes, nowadays we can do what we want – particularly to expand and explore our own self-awareness, and isn’t it lovely that we have the opportunity to do that? Thank you Joanne x

  • Thanks Irene for this great post – I’ve loved getting older, I feel sassier, and sexier, and far more comfortable in my own skin as I’ve progressed through my 40s, so it’s a shame the media just can’t keep up with that.

  • for me 50 being the new 35 is that we are all living longer and healthier…and that is all…as when I was 35 50 was old … old in mindset and attitude and now it is more down with the youth…well that is my story and I am sticking with it!

  • Thanks Sarupa. Yes we are living longer & healthier AND it’s more than that as our consciousness has grown too AND it’s being visible and taking risks too. Irene xx

  • Keep on being sexier and sassier, Lottie, as that#s what keeps our spirit young. To hell with the media’s view! Irene xx

  • Thank you for putting me on your list of blogs that are really useful – much appreciated x

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