Loneliness is a huge issue for Baby Boomer women. Many women in their 60s are living alone and, while some of these women are enjoying their new found independence, others find themselves feeling like their lives lack purpose or direction without close social ties. In fact, in a recent Sixty and Me survey, 75% of the women in our community said that they are feeling alone.
One of the most important things that I learned from our survey on loneliness is that people who are dealing with loneliness are not starved for interaction – they are starved for intimacy. I don’t mean intimacy in a purely romantic or physical sense.
One of the stereotypes about baby boomers is that we are selfish and unwilling to help others. In reality, the number of senior volunteers is increasing, according to this New York Times report. So, it looks like our generation is more willing to help than we get credit for.
Have you ever noticed how everything in the modern world encourages us to be self-centered? Social media invites us to share every small detail of our lives – including what we are eating for breakfast. TV commercials encourage us to buy the latest gadgets, in a futile attempt to buy happiness.
Gift giving is a true art – one that most women over 60 have perfected over the years. We have bought gifts for our children, husbands, friends, teachers, nurses, mailmen, and even the neighbor’s dog.
We like to thank people, because we know what it means to be appreciated. We understand that the value of a gift is not measured by what it costs, but in the planning and thoughtfulness that went into the purchase. You know that old phrase.