Crossing The Border Into Old Age: The Baby Boomer Challenge

Overview

CROSSING THE BORDER INTO OLD AGE.

THE BABY BOOMER CHALLENGE

BY JULIA COLE KNEISSL

The generational upheavals of our sixty to one hundred year olds will rise significantly as the first wave of baby boomers become eligible for retirement. Many retirement issues are addressed and the lifestyles of our older age group will all be affected by the new ideas and energy of our younger members. As a former Professor of...

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Overview

CROSSING THE BORDER INTO OLD AGE.

THE BABY BOOMER CHALLENGE

BY JULIA COLE KNEISSL

The generational upheavals of our sixty to one hundred year olds will rise significantly as the first wave of baby boomers become eligible for retirement. Many retirement issues are addressed and the lifestyles of our older age group will all be affected by the new ideas and energy of our younger members. As a former Professor of Gerontology, Julia was only partly prepared for her old age. She found that books on aging were written by researchers who were not retired yet. After fourteen years of retirement Julia now feels qualified to write about the years that are within her experience. She has taken a psychosocial approach to the problems and choices of living, with an emphasis on redefining oneself as an older person. Many men and women have shared their experiences. The book offers practical suggestions. Yes - the baby boomers are entering the zone of old age - a zone where we place old people so that we don't have to worry about them. Who are these upstarts coming forth with new ideas and high expectations? Why are our feathers being ruffled? We have grown quite comfortable in our time zone. This new generation entering our sacred space will be disassociating themselves from the stigma of aging. As people are living longer the numbers celebrating ninety and one hundred year old birthdays are increasing and even more significantly the numbers of men are also increasing, but male specific services and activities are lagging far behind.

Julia encourages you to look "outside of the box" in viewing aging issues. How do you downsize? Give up the car? (Without feeling lost and resentful.) How can you turn these into positive experiences? Are you wealthy enough to retire or too scared to retire? What can you expect from your body? Is it ok to have a drink of alcohol at night? What about your mental abilities- are you doomed to have dementias? Memory loss? How will we decide when it is time to stop driving?

One of the biggest demands will be that of housing and lifestyles, with aging in place being the most popular option. It is generally acknowledged that our baby boomers will be working longer, so a retirement life style will be at a later age, probably not before seventy-five. The market will be hungry for this generation as the competition for services mounts. Demands for apartment living and food service will change.

Julia writes, "The youngest amongst us (70's and 80's) remember well the wars we waged against established traditions. We were part of the one hundred and twenty years that it took for women to gain equal voting rights in this country. We picketed "Men Only" Clubs where business was carried out over leisurely expense paid lunches. We were part of the feminist movement (even if we did not burn our bras and go to Woodstock). We turned the position of the "at home" Mom who did "nothing" into the working Mom who did both. We saw women crack and transcend the glass ceiling in the work place. Have we thought about how we can transcend the glass ceiling of prejudice against the older person? We need to start by understanding ourselves, who we are collectively, but more importantly as individuals. If we can learn about the resources available to ourselves, and always remember that we raised our children to be self-sufficient and independent, then we owe it to ourselves and our families to maintain a quality of living which maintains as much independence as our health and financial resources will allow."

As a retired Professor Emeritus of Gerontology, Julia found that most authors were young. Julia sees that this new generation will be disassociating themselves from the stigma of aging.Julia encourages you to look "outside of the box" in viewing aging issues. How do you downsize? Give up the car? Prepare for retirement? What can you expect from your body?What about your mental abilities?

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781468024159
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Publishing
  • Publication date: 12/1/2012
  • Pages: 140
  • Sales rank: 1,273,238
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.30 (d)

Meet the Author

ABOUT THE AUTHOR- JULIA COLE KNEISSL.
Born in New Zealand, Julia obtained a B.S.in Consumer Arts and Science. After graduation she served as an lecturer at the University of Otago.
Relocating to Montreal, Canada then to Albany N.Y. USA, Julia obtained her Master's degree in Social Work at SUNY Albany. She accepted a position at
Hudson Valley Community College as an assistant professor, subsequently becoming a full professor in the Human Services Department. This included teaching courses in gerontology and a fieldwork course. She saw the need for expanded training opportunities. Julia became keenly aware that textbooks were written from the perspective of younger people or scientists, (Ph.D. research papers were very common) Older authors wrote few, if any.
She enrolled in a three year advanced course at the Family Institute in
Westchester County. Three of the top family therapists, Betty Carter, Olga
Silverstein and Peggy Papp gave Julia her first training in Women's Issues therapies and the importance of life experience which she applied in her work as a psychotherapist in private practice.. Other avenues for teaching gerontology opened up - Memorial Hospital School of Nursing, Albany Medical College in their series on Human Sexuality. How to become an open physician was the focus, as most at that time had no interest in people over sixty. Julia taught gerontology at Russell Sage College in Troy N.Y. as well as conducting workshops on retirement for companies looking at downsizing their employment base. She was awarded a sabbatical leave of one semester that returned her to study cases that involved older adults at the Family Institute of Westchester
County.
Julia taught for twenty- three years and felt fully prepared for her retirement. Mortgages were paid off teeth were fixed, the house was in good repair, the Florida dream for the winter was a reality. For three years everything looked just like the books said it was going to be. Then things changed. That is what her book is about.
Julia has focused on problems in living topics, which finds it's strength in the fact that it is written from the hot seat of the author who has plenty of "tell it like it is"
experience. Topics of interest in this book should appeal to Baby Boomers and their parents and grandparents.
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