We live in a youth obsessed culture. Being young equates to being cool, relevant and visible. This is even more true within the LGBT community. So what happens when the inevitable passage of time hits you?
No matter how young, perky and wide-eyed you may be right now, one day you too will have to deal with the inevitability of ageing.
But don’t worry. It’s not all bad. Well, OK maybe it’s about half bad. A lot of it comes down to your own attitude about it. If you see ageing as loss of youthfulness, things might not seem so great. If on the other hand you see ageing as something positive and from which you gain and grow as a person, you’ll have a much better experience with it.
Here are 10 things I’m observing happening within my own life, as a Gay, 30-something year old gay dude.
1 – Hair today, gone tomorrow
Hair does weird stuff in your 30s. There’s less of it where you want it (on your head) and more of it in places you never knew hair could grow (nostrils and ears). Yeah, it’s kind of gross and full on being the observer of your hair’s wild ride. There’s really nothing you can do about it though, so buckle up and enjoy the ride!
2 – It’s OK to be grey
If you’re lucky enough to keep your head hair, it can still play tricks on you. Namely, your previously vibrant brown, blonde or ginger locks start to make their trek towards Lee Lin Chin-ville… Yep, it’s time to accept the grey. Just think though, some people prefer to call grey hair wisdom highlights!
3 – Going out gets interesting
OK, so you’re not that guy that everyone is looking at with either pity or scorn (why is someone that old at a club?), but in a way, something worse happens. You become invisible. It seems that all the young teeny/twenty-ish peeps don’t see the over 30s peeps. So yeah, we’re too old to be groped on the way to the bar. God I miss those days!
4 – Things were better back then
Getting older makes you appreciate the music, movies and general pop culture from your teens and 20s all the more. After all, everything was so much better back then. You actually bought music, you saw original movies (as opposed to sequels, prequels and reboots) and words like streaming, uploading and torrents were only known and used by nerds (who ironically now rule the current social pecking order). Aaah, the good ol’ days…
5 – You remember when gay clubs were for, you know, gay people
How retro, right? In these modern, post-gay times, venues and the social scene in general seem to be going down the mix and mingle route. While there are positives to this, I do miss the days when we had dedicated spaces that were just ours. It’s not that I don’t like sharing, it’s just that it feels that by sharing, we’re losing our ability to be ourselves a little bit.
6 – It’s called the dirty thirties for a reason
Now I’m not a scientifical type, but something hormonal is definitely happening to me in my 30s. Assumed wisdom has it that males experience their sexual peak in the late teens. That must only refer to straight males, because us gay guys in our 30s are having hotter, sweatier and better sex than ever!
7 – You take an interest in interest rates
I used to zone out during both the finance section of the news. Now, it’s what I tune in for. I not only know that RBA stands for, I know that every first Tuesday of the month, I eagerly await the decision they make. Why? Because it directly affects my hip pocket. Becoming a homeowner is the official sign that you have reached adulthood.
8 – Some dreams have to die
By the time you’ve reached your 30s, you’ve probably experienced your fair share of life’s curveballs. Your childhood dreams may seem like distant memories from a bygone era. You know what? That may be OK. Realising you’ll never be an astronaut, fire fighter, or the head Spice Girl (Ginger, right?) gives way to all the little goals and achievements you have achieved in your life.
It may not sound as glamorous to become the Senior Project Officer, or Admin Team Leader, but god dammit, you worked hard to get there. In your 30s, you begin to feel prouder of all the things you’ve managed to do, and you gain the wisdom to realise that there are some things you need to let go of.
9 – You start accepting stuff more
The flip side of saying goodbye to certain dreams and ideals you may have held, is that you begin to accept things (life, people, situations) a lot more. It becomes a case of realising you’ll never be a Men’s Health cover model, and so instead you start to accept and hey, even like the body you do have. It might not be perfect, but it yours – and it’s the only one you’ll ever own.
The same goes for people and life in general. Your overbearing mother, your needy friends, your boss who doesn’t value you – you start to accept that there are just some things you can’t change. Only you can. That’s a good thing, and possibly the first step on the road to a happier, less stressful life.
10 – It’s not over
If you’re 30-something and feeling depressed, don’t be. It could be worse. You could be in your 40s! Seriously though, you do still have time. Even if you feel like you’ve ‘failed to launch’, don’t give up. A lot of the world’s most successful leaders, innovators and thought leaders took their sweet time to achieve their success. Henry Ford, Charles Darwin, JK Rowling, Martha Stewart and Vera Wang are just some of a large crop of late bloomers. There’s still time!
H/T: Little Gay Blog
What do you think? How are you navigating your 30s, or are you in your 20s and think it’ll never happen to you? Share your thoughts below.