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whats the deal with growing up ? why do it hurt so much , what makes getting older so bad


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What is it about getting older that makes is it so terrifying and sad. Is it the loos of innocence ? is it the realization that were getting closer to death ? or that the world seems to only cater to the young. Idk why but ive always had a thing with age and time. Its hard to explain but I know im not old but for 5 years ive felt like a crimping angst about age and time and how much ive wasted all of it. its funny because instead of doing something about it Its only made me waste even more time :( Im barely turning 23 this month and ive felt "old" and wasted for so long. Its confusing because Ill look at old shows and video games I used to enjoy like right now im looking at an old video game called kingdom heart with the song sanctuary and makes so sad just hearing it and looking at it. Its like I was a happy child so Idk why sometimes I feel like going back. I always wonder if its possible to get happier with age and gain optimism but idk . 

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What a great and profound topic, June322,

I don't know about others, but now that I am older [63] I do not find getting even older to be so bad.  Some of my best times took place when I was in my 40s and 50s.  Of course, I could not have foreseen those when I was younger.  I was very influenced by two people late in life:  the psychiatrist Viktor Frankl and the Holocaust rescuer Oskar Schindler.  Frankl, a Holocaust survivor elaborated a great deal on a statement of Nietzsche [with whom he disagreed on most things] :  "Those who have a why to live can bear with any how."

Sometimes I think that if the "why" is strong enough it can even transcend itself into a hope of immortality. 

Oskar Schindler was a many with many weaknesses and even failures in his life.  He wasn't what you would call a great family man or a great husband.  He had addictions.   But at some point, he saved the lives of over 1000 Jewish people who were slated to be exterminated in Nazi concentration camps. 

After this wonderful thing he did, his life did not seem extraordinary in any way.  He went bankrupt and had health problems.  It seemed that the other areas of his life did not "shine" as they say.  But what he did for the Jews gave a meaning to his life which, I don't know, transcended everything else.  That shining moment justified his entire life.

What he did in a very public and dramatic way is often done by many others in less dramatic fashion.  The psychiatrist Viktor Frankl, for example, devoted his life to helping people. 

Sometimes it seems that the "meaning" of something only appears in the very doing of it.  It is hard to explain.  Its like . . . if you read every book on bicycles and riding a bicycle but never ever rode one . . . the justification of riding a bicycle would somehow evade you. There are lots of things in life like that.

Sometimes heroism, for example does not take place in some one-time earth-shattering way that is going to make the news or history books.  Sometimes is happens in the shadows.

I am not Jewish myself, but there is famous Jewish saying:  "Whoever helps to save one life, it is as though that person had saved the earth entire."  I came from a tradition that believed in some kind of immortality.  But I know others who do not.  I know people who tell me they are happy to live a good life and have a good death.  

Anyway . . . I think old age can hone the will of a person.  It is as though everything superficial starts to fall away and purpose becomes very focused and intense.  Don't really know how to put any of this in words that do justice to the experience.  And even if I could, it would be like what I said about reading about riding a bicycle.  Words about riding a bicycle just cannot compare to riding a bicycle.   - epictetus

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I think it really depends on life circumstances. I don't view getting older as bad but I do struggle with the fact that I am not where I should be for someone my age, depression has made me lose out on a lot of opportunities and I kinda feel left behind so I get what you mean about feeling like you wasted time.

18 - 23 is a difficult age though, so much uncertainty and you now have to work for everything that was given to you when you were a child so it's understandable that you would feel nostalgic if your life lacks a clear purpose and stability. Once you get more adjusted to the adult-role things should slowly change for the better though. 

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  • 1 month later...

It's *how* you grow older that matters. I did it the wrong way (for the most part, anyway). I let myself fall into the trap of accumulating crap, buying a house, etc. I nailed myself down while I was still young. Enjoy your life and follow your dreams. It sounds simplistic but I wish I had done that.

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I think the change is a big part of it. We have to learn and adjust to so much new stuff, and oftentimes we weren't really prepared for it (a lot of overgeneralized advice, etc).

Work becomes important, while it was just a bonus as a teenager for most people to have your own spending money.

That, and people and the media talk so much about college-age youth, that you'd think it's the only time people are making new friends, falling in love, and doing new things.

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I'm 56 but I can relate to this. I've thought about getting older all my life. Now that I am, I realize that I've had an intense fear of dying and death and this sense that I wasted my entire life. I wish I had known sooner what I know now. As I've gotten older, I have learned to let go of the really unimportant things - and that almost everything is unimportant.  This life and every part of it is temporary, so learning to live i the moment has really helped me.

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I am 68 and enjoying my life more than ever. Been there, got over that part.  My children are grown and I have six wonderful grandchildren. 

I have the same problems as anyone else, but over the years you do learn to deal with them the best way you know how and have learned to. 

This is life.

Some days I cannot get out of bed except to let my dogs out.

So? I catch up on things on my iPad or phone and life is definitely worth living, it is beautiful! 

I do hope you see it for what it truly is.




 I so appreciated your post.:hearts: 

Read my Quote. This is what drives me andhas gotten me through since 2001 when I began DF.



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