I found a post from Writer’s Circle on Facebook – with a 30 day writing challenge. This is day 9: My feelings on ageism
When I was a teenager, I remember being kicked out of a McDonald’s along with my friends because we had been sitting there too long, albeit that we were each eating a full meal. When I pointed out to the manager that the table of two older people with just coffee in front of them had preceded our arrival, and were in fact still firmly ensconced at their table for four, I was told to mind my p’s and q’s (what does that mean, by the way?). We left but I was full of righteous indignation for a long time afterwards.
Just about long enough for me to become an adult and to begin to look sideways at teenagers who took up a bunch of seats with their bags, who were loud, throwing food and generally carrying on like, well… like teenagers.
Good thing I never managed a McDonald’s restaurant.
At every age, there is some form of ageism.
There’s the ‘let’s ban babies from airplanes’ group.
There’s the ‘let’s ban drunken asshole adults from airplanes’ group.
Teenagers feel mistreated by adults, adults feel mistreated by younger people, adult children mistreat (whether on purpose or not) their ageing parents and ageing parents have no time for the antics of children, despite having raised a passel of them themselves. Or so it sometimes seems.
So what’s a person to do?
Really, any form of discrimination, which pits one human against another for supremacy, based solely on age, is just plain wrong. But how do we stop it? I don’t think we can. But we can be more aware of it and the more of us who are aware of it, at every stage of life, the more of us can put a stop to it.
So don’t discriminate against me because I’m a slightly overweight 40 something single mother. You don’t know me just because you know those things. In return, I won’t discriminate against you. I’ll look for a real reason to dislike you before I go ahead and do that. Oh, but if you want to go ahead and call me an under-aged curmudgeon, I’ll have to take that… because it’s probably true.