Many women in their 60s feel invisible. When we walk down the street or into a crowded room, it’s easy to feel like nobody notices us, especially men. There is probably some truth to this. After all, our youth obsessed culture seems to place a much higher value on physical appearance than acquired wisdom.
At the same time, I have a feeling that much of our “invisibility” comes from our own negative self-talk.
When we pull back from the world and assume that no-one wants to talk to us, we risk creating a self-fulfilling prophecy.
The more I think about it, the more I believe that invisibility is not something that happens to us – it is a cloak that we wrap ourselves in as we get a little older.
A year ago, I talked about how much I treasured my “invisibility cloak.” I said that it has given me the freedom to be myself, without worrying about the expectations of others. More importantly, I pointed out that we can remove our invisibility cloak anytime that we want to.
We can choose to be silent observers. Or, we can engage with the world on our own terms. The decision is ours.
It’s important to remember that aging stereotypes do not just have an impact on others – they also frame how we see the world as well. When we see movies filled with women who are “aging gracefully,” we come to believe that this is normal. When we read headings like “7 Celebrity Women Who Are Still Attractive at 60,” we read between the lines that being attractive after age 60 is unusual.
As women over 60, we can take control of our identity. We can choose to be invisible when we want to… and we can also choose to be seen when it suits our purpose. We can wear clothes that draw positive attention to ourselves. We can embrace natural makeup. We can improve and celebrate our bodies. Most of all, we can explore our passions with the people that we care about.
So, my message is simple:
Learn to treasure your invisibility cloak – but, remember that it has an on/off switch!
I’d love to hear your thoughts on this. Please take a few minutes to answer the questions below so that the other women in our community can gain from your unique perspective.
Do you sometimes feel invisible as a woman over 60? Are there times when you enjoy being invisible? Do you think that being invisible after 60 is inevitable? Or, do you agree that, while each of us wears an invisibility cloak, we also have the ability to turn it off at will? Please join the conversation.