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Crabby after early 60's???
Old 11-02-2007, 04:30 PM   #1
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Crabby after early 60's???

I thought I was the only one who noticed that a few of my old high school friends who are now 62-64 occasionally have little outbursts of crankiness/nastiness/crabbiness/whatever, but I was talking to two compadres in the pool today that are 74 y.o. (lineman Supv. with the electric company, retired) and 68 (Ph.D. Chemist). They BOTH confirmed that they, too, noticed some friends/relatives hit a certain age and get more on the cranky side; however, neither of them are that way at all.
Sometimes they actually didn't notice how bad the friend/relative was getting until 10 years later, and then, looking back, can see the change. But they noticed it at some point.
I'm noticing it already in some old friends...I mean, they are snappish at times like...well....OLD PEOPLE!!!!!!
What the heck is happening here, folks? Now I am going to have to watch for that in myself it has made me so paranoid.
People that are usually amiable--if you are talking about a subject they are particularly interested in--they are fine...then you start talking about something they either have no knowledge about or interest in and...Whomp! they either get nasty, act insulted or tune you out = cranky!
Does it have to do with how active we have kept our brains over the years? Does it have to do with our physical health?
The shocking thing to me is that two of the people I can think of off the top of my head that show these signs appear (on the surface) to be pretty happy in general. Of course, I have no idea what is going on behind closed doors. They could be so mean as all getout at home.
If this is what growing old is going to do to me...heck, you can have it then!
Has anyone else experienced the same with friends/relatives when they hit their 60's?
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Old 11-02-2007, 04:36 PM   #2
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Hey, I didn't hit my 60's, they hit me.

There's absolutely NO TRUTH to the fairy tale of people getting CRABBY when they're older!!! You're full of it and don't know what you're talking about!!!! I'm done with this conversation...




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Old 11-02-2007, 04:52 PM   #3
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Yup..that's what they sound like, too...SEEEEEEE
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Old 11-02-2007, 05:03 PM   #4
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Sometimes it's a subconscious reaction to being mildly confused, hard of hearing, or some other impairment that the curmudgeon feels self-conscious about. In other words, it's a distancing reaction, a defense.

And of course if it's really persistent it might indicate early Alzheimers - loss of social skills, etc. This is even more true if things like hygiene, clothing and other social display skills are apparent.
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Old 11-02-2007, 05:07 PM   #5
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I still have have 7 months before I turn 60, BUT....

I have noticed that I don't tend to bite my lip and be silent as much as I did when I was younger. It's true.

I don't think I am crabbier - - I was always crabby!! I just didn't express it as often, so all that people saw was a nice, compliant person they could easily push around and walk over. Now, I am less tolerant of what I regard as B.S. than I was when I was younger, and I tend to say what I think more often.

I don't necessarily think that's a bad thing. If people don't like it, they can kiss my royal.... Oh! I didn't say that. Not for another 7 months.
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Old 11-02-2007, 05:33 PM   #6
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I'm only in my late forties, but a few days ago I was having pain of some kind.. I can't even remember if it was a headache or some kind of stomach cramps, but anyway.. I remember really snapping at DH a couple of times in a row. I just really over-reacted and I wasn't conscious of how irritable I was.

I think a lot of older people have low-level aches, pains and discomfort that they just live with. They probably don't even really remember what it is like to be free of pain.

I'm also aware my sight isn't perfect like it used to be, and I think that adds to a subconscious frustration and impatience, too.
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Old 11-02-2007, 06:14 PM   #7
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I think I'm much calmer than I used to be . I just don't let petty things bother me .Maybe I'm adapting to the lay back Florida life style .One of my friends did say she's angry a lot but she's also still working with no let up in sight .
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Old 11-02-2007, 06:29 PM   #8
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At nearly three years into retirement (age 57), I am so much less crabby than I was was while working that I can't imagine being there again. Though I could imagine getting crabby if I had to deal with large amounts of people in small spaces again.

I read somewhere that people don't become different as they age as much as they become more of what they were. The crabby become crabbier, the generous become more generous, jerks become bigger jerks...

As ladelfina mentioned, it can be a result of the physical tolls of aging. Chronic pain, failing vision and hearing, having to ask for help (and knowing it's not going to get any better) are not conducive to an optimistic outlook.

I've been feeling rather good lately, but the arthritis is still there and likes to send little reminders once in a while.
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Old 11-02-2007, 09:07 PM   #9
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There is evidence that as we age, natural changes in brain function reduces the ability to reduce inhibitions. As a result, those little annoyances that we youngsters just let role, tend to get said rather than dismissed. So, some of the crankiness is related to increased tendency to say it more bluntly and to experience things more bluntly. The outside perception is more curmudgeon and grumpy. (I am not refering to any of our beloved participants!)
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Old 11-03-2007, 06:17 AM   #10
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I think I got a jump on that saying what you want to much earlier than most...much to the dismay of many. Oh well...can't please everybody, but many react negatively to too much uninhibition. You just learn to curb it.
Met a geriatric nurse who said that if people were sweethearts when they were younger, they stay sweet..and if they were nasty, they stay nasty when they get Alzheimers. That the basic personality does not change despite the illness.
Granted, those little aches and pains can affect people, I am sure...but dang! So young? 62-63 seems awfully young to me, but maybe it isn't. I come from a family of longer livers than that with better dispositions, I think.
Guess I am just getting over the shock of someone who used to be my old Jr. high pal being so...well...irritated by such small things now. She seems to be in a little world of her own with her extreme love of nature and her kids. Reality upsets her, and she wants to never be exposed to any harsh truth about much of anything (like she still says what a great person her sister was, how many friends she had when she died...leaving out the fact that she was a neglectful and self-centered parent that raised two totally dysfunctional kids due to her bad parenting).
Guess she was always this way, and that I just...well, grew up and away from that sort of magical thinking, which seems awfully immature and defensive to me.
Oh well....another damned life lesson learned..........but I'm staying away from those grumpy people myself.
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Old 11-03-2007, 07:32 AM   #11
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I know a lot of grumpy people now who are in their 30's, me included! I have been grumpy myself because of being sick, having a clogged up ear, having to wear glasses at night instead of my contacts, finding more white hairs on my head.....and I'll 33 in a couple of weeks. I hate to think of what I will be at 60!
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Old 11-03-2007, 10:00 AM   #12
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Well, you can tell from my avatar that I don't have the most sunny personality to begin with. However, I think that in my case the grumpiness is made worse by the constant back pain that I have. I notice that when my back is particularly bad I am much more prone to caustic responses to those around me. Has this gotten worse as I have aged? I guess so, but so have my back problems.

DW and I have noticed that her dad (age 84) has gotten much crabbier as he has aged. The way I look at it, he has a right to be crabby. His wife died a few years ago, he is legally blind due to macular degeneration, is mostly deaf and needs a walker to get around. I fully intend to off myself before I get to a state like that. If I were forced to live like he does I would be crabby as hell!

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Old 11-03-2007, 11:06 AM   #13
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Who the hell has been messing with this thermostat?

And you kids get the hell off my lawn!!!
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Old 11-03-2007, 04:55 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Orchidflower View Post
She seems to be in a little world of her own with her extreme love of nature and her kids. Reality upsets her, and she wants to never be exposed to any harsh truth about much of anything (like she still says what a great person her sister was, how many friends she had when she died...leaving out the fact that she was a neglectful and self-centered parent that raised two totally dysfunctional kids due to her bad parenting).
I imagine that her attitudes might be no less justifiable and maybe more kind than some other attitudes might be.

Many if not most people are in their own little world. Read this board often?

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Old 11-03-2007, 05:34 PM   #15
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Good one, haha...that gave me a laugh. Yes..I get you...there are many who live in their own little worlds.
What I want to know--and have said to a few girlfriends that live in the most pleasant little world in their head--is how the heck to I get in there? I live in Realityville, damnit! It's hard out here! And it, surely, is not so pleasant as the Little World they live in where everything is wonderful, life is rosy all the time, everyone is kind and good..and the sun never stops shining. I WANT TO GET IN THAT WORLD...it has to be easier!!!!
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Old 11-03-2007, 06:08 PM   #16
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I have noticed that I don't tend to bite my lip and be silent as much as I did when I was younger. It's true.

I don't think I am crabbier - - I was always crabby!! I just didn't express it as often, so all that people saw was a nice, compliant person they could easily push around and walk over. Now, I am less tolerant of what I regard as B.S. than I was when I was younger, and I tend to say what I think more often.

I don't necessarily think that's a bad thing. If people don't like it, they can kiss my royal.... Oh! I didn't say that.
You took the words right out of my mouth!

I also tend to think that crabbiness may be a genetic thing. I think I've turned into my dear departed Dad! Heck, I even yell at the stupid TV when I watch the nightly news!! And it doesn't even have to be news reports about low-life, scum-sucking, pig-headed, moronic politicians!!! I can even "go off" on the goof-ball weatherman!




(....and I'm only 50! )
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Old 11-12-2007, 07:37 PM   #17
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Uncharacteristic "crabbiness" in some older folks can indicate the onset of mental problems, e.g., dementia.

For example, an elderly family member started saying nasty things which were out of character. Shortly thereafter, we put her in an assisted care/nursing home center and a doctor prescribed medication which helped quite a bit.
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Old 11-12-2007, 11:52 PM   #18
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Lots of stories out there about 'brain shrinkage' recently. Something happens to the frontal lobes that reduces inhibitions. Aerobic exercise can help, apparently.
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Old 11-13-2007, 01:01 AM   #19
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Lots of stories out there about 'brain shrinkage' recently. Something happens to the frontal lobes that reduces inhibitions. Aerobic exercise can help, apparently.
Actually, in my early fifties when I was still working, I noticed of myself that I seemed to be kind of cranky--a lot. Then I retired, and I think I am less cranky--maybe almost b=never cranky--now.

Interesting about the "brain shrinkage" perhaps causing crankiness, and the fact aerobic exercise helps. Two months after I retired, I started a three day a week exercise routine with probably an hour of aerobics eacch session. Maybe that not only kept my brain from shrinking with increasing age, but actually expanded it--meaning I got less cranky!!

Or maybe it was just because I was happily retired and had nowhere near as easy a time of fiinding things to get cranky about as when I was w*rking and dealing with all the BS.
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Old 11-13-2007, 06:35 PM   #20
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It's funny, but just before this thread started I was thinking that I was becoming more like my grandfather. Now there was a crabby person. I think I have less patience when the people I work with as I come closer to the day I don't need to work. How crabby was graddad? Well at his funeral the Minister started the eulogy by saying "John did'nt like me or many of the poeple here today". went downhill from there. I loved that man. Al
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