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OPINION: Prominent figures pick apart the meaning of senior

The verdict is in - age is only a number. 

Personal trainer Tracey Moore spoke out this week defending her age group and igniting a debate over when we should call people "senior".

Most readers who reached out on social media reassured Ms Moore that the age of 50 is certainly ripe but not old. 

The Observer asked prominent community members from different walks of life --- including two local sporting identities, a property developer, and a retired teacher --- what they think defines "senior". 

Edgar Allen, retired property developer, 74

50 is what's in a number.

I know that you can certainly have a senior moment at 50.

Someone said that 40 is the old age of youth and 50 is the youth of old age.

Edgar Allen
Edgar Allen Mike Richards GLADV080414RETI

Basically, the number is really in the mind, but we do need some sort of a guide when your age is heading north.

You will know the time as you approach your senior years.

I'll never forget one of my life's lessons on my 40th birthday.

I received a call from my very special father.

I said to him; "how come you are ringing me for the first time on my birthday."

He said son; "40 is the time in your life when you know what you have done and decide what you want to do with the rest of your life". 

Some say that by the age of 50 you have gathered all the knowledge to get you through the rest of your life.

I don't think turning 50 will change your life or anything else for that matter -- life goes on.

I know some people would like to think they're seniors at 50.

What about the blokes who work on the pick and shovel and the wonderful nurses and doctors who work at night
I bet they feel like seniors at 50. 

I have had a bit to do with seniors (that's the 50 plus group) as the former president of the Gladstone Central Committee on the Aging for the 13 years.

This group has built the seniors citizens village of 190 buildings plus an office and recreation hall.

Our constitution says our seniors may join the group at the age of 50.

50 what's in a name!?

Rod Spice, Capricornia Barbarian masters player, 44

As I grew up as a child I thought  any adult is a "senior" until I hit 20 years old, then it was "anybody who is 20 years older than me " was a senior.

Rod Spice
Rod Spice Jake Jones

As I approach 50 (still a few years away) I'm thinking 70 would be considered Senior.

As a masters footballer now, I see varying degrees of activity in my mates, from the wear and tear of sport and life. 

I believe that if your young at heart and kee

p your mind and body relatively active and injury free or work with what you have, the people 20 years older will be your senior. 

Don't get old before your time and don't die wondering!

Wendy Barker, former dance teacher, 72

I can understand why a 50 year old person would object to being referred to as a senior.

I think there is a connotation that "senior" is elderly and infirm, yet a 50 year old is far from that. I am far from that!

Wendy Barker
Wendy Barker Paul Braven

When I think back to myself at 50, I was starting a new venture with my work and considered myself young and vital.  

I still do! Even now, 20 plus years later, I cringe when I think that it is considered that I have joined the ranks of seniors.

Nothing wrong with seniors! Those I know, are having a lot of fun.

I am of the opinion that how we feel is a state of mind.  I don't like to be put into any category. 

Perhaps a discussion and new perception of who and what seniors are would be a positive.

When I think of myself as a senior (and let's face it, at 72 I suppose I am,), it is not uplifting because of my own perception (old). 

So I act as I feel --- young and vibrant and ready to start anew whatever comes my way.

Pauline Kelly, Gladstone Basketball Association, 47

I don't think that over 50s are seniors.

They're the backbone of a lot of different areas in our community. They're the backbone of our volunteer groups, of our support groups, of sporting clubs.

I don't see them as seniors at all. I don't like to label people.

There's too many different facets to people, so you can't label them.

If over 50s were "too old", who would help pick up the kids to take them to school? They're there to help people.

What would we do without them?
 

Topics:  debate old old age opinion



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