Monday, October 23, 2017

Old-Young Aging Expectations (Research, Video 4:08)

Are people less or more angry as they age? What about their degrees of sadness? Is it harder for others to hurt their feelings? Many older adults think they have become much more resilient and calmer in dealing with their feelings. Others say they are less tolerant and more annoyed and resentful than they were when they were younger. What do you expect to be the likely answer to these questions on anger and sadness based on research?

A study investigating age differences in anger and sadness was done with 82 younger and 80 older adults. Participants relived personal angry and sad memories and expressed aloud their feelings. Various emotional responses such as verbal expressions, facial behaviors, and physiological arousal were also noted. While age differences in sadness were less pronounced, older adults really did react with less anger than did their younger counterparts. Is that what you expected?

Expectations regarding aging, including physical aging, are often self-fulfilling among older adults and stereotypically incorrect among younger adults. This video illustrates the importance of both older and younger adults having positive aging expectations.

Frances Shani Parker, Author
Becoming Dead Right: A Hospice Volunteer in Urban Nursing Homes is available in paperback and e-book editions in America and other countries at online and offline booksellers.
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