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Thread: Senior Guilt

  1. #1
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    Senior Guilt

    I hear so often about how "boomers" are a burden, depriving younger generations of $ etc. There are "too many" of us.

    I realize that i personally am not responsible for the hardships younger generations experience. I had/have my own. But it niggles all the same & i swing from anger to guilt and back, over & over.

    And ohhhhhh i see red when i'm told i "ruined the planet". I was writing letters, waving placards and practicing the three Rs before there any such term. I especially get het up when my accuser uses snowmobiles and quads instead of their feet to "experience" nature, or talk excitedly about mud-bogging.

    Argh. Sorry for rant.

    Point being, in spite of crying foul, i still feel guilty just for existing. And occasionally anxious as in when is someone going to decide that culling the herd would be A Good Thing

    Sigh.

    BB
    The way to do is to be - Lao Tzu

  2. #2
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    Senior Guilt

    I've become a latter day activist regarding climate change, especially since the birth of my first grandchild. I may be gone by the time the destruction of this planet reaches critical mass but he isn't even 2 yet.

    In my defense (and yours), it's only been in perhaps the last 5-10 years or so that we've really become aware of how far reaching and catastrophic it all is. There were so many things we simply didn't know when I was growing up and even as a younger adult.

    That doesn't mean we can't do whatever we can to remedy that now.

    I sometimes point out to my sons that it works both ways. When I was a child, we chewed on the bars of cribs and playpens with lead paint and I used to love to play with the mercury in broken thermometers (well, we didn't have computers or game consoles or smart phones or even television where I lived so we had to entertain ourselves some way! ).

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    Re: Senior Guilt

    If you work in health care, the boomers are paying your mortgage and car payments

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    Re: Senior Guilt

    @David Baxter - I think I came to a degree of awareness at an early age due to places I lived or visited, conversations overheard, and reading (my addiction). Back then it was pollution, and eventually toxins ... climate change wasn't even on the horizon. The three Rs used to be known as thrift (at least that's what my great-grandmother called it) and I have always hated waste. As an infant I ingested my share of lead-based paint, graduating to all manner of inedible substances. And trying to pick up little blobs of mercury with my bare fingers. I was an inquisitive, free-range child .... astonished to find myself still alive.

    Between roughly ages 6 and 13 I:

    • saw and smelled smog so thick only the most foolhardy of drivers didnt crawl from point A to B. It got on my skin, in my eyes and nose, and it hurt.
    • I ran through cornfields freshly anointed with DDT. It hurt and made me ill.
    • I was taken on an outing into the Nevada desert back in the early 60s & got a (thankfully "mild") case of radiation poisoning.

    It wasn't hard to eventually connect those experiences to things I heard and read, and then contrast those with a region here in BC that had, at best, sketchy electric, telephone & radio .... and very occasionally, TV I suppose being a kid/teenager who preferred the gloriously beautiful and fascinating outdoors (BC style) to the latest in Rock n Roll or fashion, I unconsciously at first noticed small changes and then a heartbreaking sweep of changes (says she as she taps away on her hand-me-down mobile). In 1975 my mother wept as her garden drowned in what turned out to be the first of almost yearly soggy summers. I remember that as the year change began to move at an observable pace. Selfishly I don't miss -45C winter temps, but neither am i impressed with wall to wall sheets of ice (I'm old ... I don't bounce any more).
    Oh help! I'm on cranky old lady mode and have managed to vector off all over the place.

    But here's the thing: we didn't know what we didn't know, and most of us "regular folk" have done our best with what we did know.

    Wow, that's profound

    I passionately applaud anyone ... especially those extraordinary youth ... who are taking up the torch not only in protest but innovation. Because of them, their future might very well be less bleak than we envision. There's just some as need to look at the facts instead of dumping blame on us elderfolk (grr).

    I hear you re your grandson (congratulations!). .... it's impossible not to wonder, worry, and hope all at once (imo). I don't know about anyone else, but while my kids rarely take me seriously, my grandchildren think i'm wise and wonderful. Both generations not quite on the mark, but I enjoy the reunion with my brain

    Shutting up now ....
    BB

    - - - Updated - - -
    @Daniel - I need to write that down!

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    Re: Senior Guilt

    Oh dear gawd how arrogant this reads. Please accept abject apology
    The way to do is to be - Lao Tzu

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    Re: Senior Guilt

    I don't think it sounds arrogant at all.

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    Re: Senior Guilt

    My favorite part was about the nuclear testing in Nevada. I did not realize how much testing was done above ground until they finally stopped the nonsense. And people actually saw it as an attraction since you could see the clouds from Vegas without leaving your hotel.


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