Do women become invisible after 50?

Aisling Grimley.

As many of us approach 50 (only 5 days of the 40s left for some of us....) I think it's interesting to consider the world's views of 50 year olds. According to a recent survey women become invisible after 50.

Staying visible after 50.

Staying visible after 50.

Recently in the Irish Times Hilary Fannin wrote about a survey commissioned by a herbal remedies company that claims that women feel that after they reach the age of 50 they are ignored by men and don’t get as much attention as heretofore.

Hilary Fannin writes: “The survey claimed that nearly half of the 2,000 women questioned felt underconfident, citing greying hair, the need to wear glasses and a general feeling that their appearance was deteriorating as the reasons for their lack of self-esteem.

Sadly, and maddeningly, it also concluded that some middle-aged women feel intimidated by the presence of more youthful females at social events, with six out of 10 respondents believing that the world is geared towards younger women.

But maybe these quinquagenarians are already forgetting what it’s like to be young, what it’s like to be viewed and assessed through a prism of desirability at an age when you are more vulnerable and less able to deal with unwanted attention.”

She ended by suggesting that our ‘invisiblity’ could in fact lead to freedom to be ourselves without having to put up with often unwanted attention.

I question the fact that the survey is conducted by a company for their own ends and also the fact that they are viewing us in relation to men rather than in relation to ourselves. However, no harm to provide us with some food for thought and an incentive to remain visible in whatever way we consider valuable.

What do you think? Do you feel less visible as you age? Is low visibility a good or a bad thing in your view?

Photo by Joe Barnes.


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