CurlTalk

why are old people so cranky??!!

fraufrau Posts: 6,130Registered Users
i was reading on the quilting thread (hope speck will teach me how to quilt) that old people can be crotchety.

i think it's true, because i find myself complaining much more than usual.

why is this??
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Comments

  • redcelticcurlsredcelticcurls Posts: 17,502Registered Users
    They have to put up with younger people.
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  • SpringcurlSpringcurl Posts: 8,002Registered Users
    I feel like if you're 75 to 80 you've done a lot, been through a lot, seen a lot and you've earned the right to be the way you want to be. I don't suffer fools easily right now, and in 30 years I'll hold my tongue even less because what do I really have to lose?
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  • SystemSystem Posts: 39,059 Administrator
    They might be sick, lonely, feel useless, tired, bored, fed up with people not taking their good advice, or maybe they're just generally miserable people...who knows?

    Why are some young people so cranky? Why is the sky blue?

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  • SariaSaria Posts: 15,963Registered Users
    I'm young and I'm pretty cranky. If I live that long I'm either going to be (incredibly) insufferable, or I'll go the opposite direction and mellow out. Which is pretty much the two groups the elderly fit into. I mean, they've had to put up with decades of stupid ****.
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  • cymprenicympreni Posts: 9,609Registered Users
    I think people just lose tolerance as they age. I know I have.

    And much like the customer is always right rule, the respect your elders "rule' is sometimes used as an excuse to be rude and take advantage of others.
  • curlysue21curlysue21 Posts: 5,219Registered Users
    My grandmother was excessively grumpy this Thanksgiving. She complained about the turkey being dry (it was), the stuffing being salty (it was), and the crust of my mom's pie tasting funny (it did). She generally has no filter but was a little more than usual that day. My sister and I found it funny but my mom not so much.

    My grandmother is a tough, independent lady and at 96 has recently been through two hip surgeries along with moving to an assisted living facility after living in her own house on her own for thirty years. I think all this change has given her less independence and I am sure she is very angry about it. My mother takes on a role to look out for and sometimes treats her rudely, almost like a child, and I am sure it is embarrassing and demeaning for her.

    Anyway I agree with others said that at a certain age you earn the right to be grumpy if you want and getting older brings health issues which can make a person miserable.
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  • mrspoppersmrspoppers Posts: 7,223Registered Users
    There are physiological and psychological changes that occur as we age. One thing that happens is we lose our "filter." You know how we say or don't say certain things because we know they're not "nice"? The elderly don't have this filter.

    Also, I can only imagine how cranky I'll be when my body is achy for no reason and I can't do the things I take for granted now. I started getting arthritis in my 30s, after a couple accidents right in a row. There are days I don't feel like being nice to anyone!
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  • Fifi.GFifi.G Posts: 15,490Registered Users
    Because they earn that right.

    I look forward to beating people with my purse, or a cane, or something ;)
    When I hear terms like "hipster" I think, who told cliques they could leave high school??

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  • spring1onuspring1onu Posts: 16,528Registered Users
    They're old.

    They're tired.
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  • SystemSystem Posts: 39,059 Administrator
    I've been very cranky too. I've had to rely on help after I've had surgery and I'm a very independent person. It makes me feel frustrated and useless. It's no different when you get older and have to rely on other people. Fortunately I'm young and was back to normal after I recovered but it's not the same when you're older. And image how much of your dignity you lose when you have to rely on someone else and that person doesn't treat you as an adult.

    I've worked in a nursing home as a CNA have heard some many older ladies and gentlemen called 'sweetie' 'honey' 'sugar' and other nicknames in a tone you'd use to address a small child. That's humiliating. They're frustrated and have no other way to vent their frustration. Wouldn't you be cranky?
  • munchkinmunchkin Posts: 2,909Registered Users
    They think age makes them "entitled." I hope I don't act that way. I can remember years ago watching older people treat sales people awful. I swore I would never be that person.
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  • The New BlackThe New Black Posts: 16,738Registered Users
    Most of the above...

    It's the young cranky people that surprise me more.
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  • PartyHairPartyHair Posts: 7,713Registered Users
    On the other hand, there are old people like my mom (82) and my uncle (89) who are not only NOT cranky, they are happy. :)

    I had a great conversation with my uncle on Thanksgiving about how content he is, how good life is, how thankful he is for his good health and his family and friends. He has not had an easy life by any stretch but he's healthy and has a family who loves him and that's enough for him. (He also got better hearing aids, which has to help! Ha!)

    And my mom always has a kind word for everyone and is just generally much beloved by all who know her. She still works part time and loves her job and the students with whom she works. She is in pretty good health and her family absolutely adores her.

    Anyway. I think that good health - physical and mental - helps old folks not to be so cranky. I also think having family and friends around, and hobbies to enjoy helps too.
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  • irociroc Posts: 7,890Registered Users
    They're tired, they're body is sore and tired, most of the people they know are dead, and a long life is exhausting.

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  • LadyV69LadyV69 Posts: 3,397Registered Users
    PartyHair wrote: »
    On the other hand, there are old people like my mom (82) and my uncle (89) who are not only NOT cranky, they are happy. :)

    I had a great conversation with my uncle on Thanksgiving about how content he is, how good life is, how thankful he is for his good health and his family and friends. He has not had an easy life by any stretch but he's healthy and has a family who loves him and that's enough for him. (He also got better hearing aids, which has to help! Ha!)

    And my mom always has a kind word for everyone and is just generally much beloved by all who know her. She still works part time and loves her job and the students with whom she works. She is in pretty good health and her family absolutely adores her.

    Anyway. I think that good health - physical and mental - helps old folks not to be so cranky. I also think having family and friends around, and hobbies to enjoy helps too.

    Co-sign. I also think a lot of grumpy older people tended to be disagreeable as young people and that's just a personality trait they have. My grandmother was a typical cranky senior citizen who developed dementia just before she died. However, according to my mother and my aunt, she wasn't always nice or agreeable when they were kids, either. She was just born to be nasty. OTOH, my grandfather, who was just six months older than her, always had a laid back personality and is the same way now at 82. When I see relatively young people with nasty attitudes, I know the chances of them acting the same way when they're elderly increase substantially.
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  • OBBOBB Posts: 4,174Registered Users
    Saria wrote: »
    I'm young and I'm pretty cranky. If I live that long I'm either going to be (incredibly) insufferable, or I'll go the opposite direction and mellow out. Which is pretty much the two groups the elderly fit into. I mean, they've had to put up with decades of stupid ****.

    i was going to post that Saria's not old and she hella cranky but u beat me to it :toothy5:
  • SunshineGrrlSunshineGrrl Posts: 3,823Registered Users
    I've noticed that the ones who seem to be crotchety or cranky is that it tends to be kind of a generational and social boundary.

    Some people were simply assertive when younger and that assertiveness carried on in life and eventually morphed into them not being afraid to speak up when something is wrong.

    I think another problem is that these people grew up in the depression or post WWII. It was big-time etiquette to address people as they should. "Miss, Ma'am, Sir, etc." You were always very respectful of your elders because they were older than you and deserved that respect.

    Now, looks at our generation. Could we be more disrespectful as a whole? "We" (general we) don't call people Miss, Ma'am, Sir, Ladies and Gentleman. When you greet someone, you say "Hey Guys!"

    And opening doors and in general chivalry was huge back then. I hardly ever see the general chivalry that they expected. Opening car doors, building doors, assisting someone when they sit, tipping your hat at someone, simply smiling and saying "good day!" to someone random in the street.

    I don't blame them for being cranky. We are in general a rude generation and while I don't think it's okay to treat someone like crap, I think they're responding to how they're being treated.

    Sorry, I hope that made sense.

  • LAwomanLAwoman Posts: 2,949Registered Users
    PartyHair wrote: »
    On the other hand, there are old people like my mom (82) and my uncle (89) who are not only NOT cranky, they are happy. :)

    I had a great conversation with my uncle on Thanksgiving about how content he is, how good life is, how thankful he is for his good health and his family and friends. He has not had an easy life by any stretch but he's healthy and has a family who loves him and that's enough for him. (He also got better hearing aids, which has to help! Ha!)

    And my mom always has a kind word for everyone and is just generally much beloved by all who know her. She still works part time and loves her job and the students with whom she works. She is in pretty good health and her family absolutely adores her.

    Anyway. I think that good health - physical and mental - helps old folks not to be so cranky. I also think having family and friends around, and hobbies to enjoy helps too.

    Love this and totally agree!

    Up until the day she died, my grandma was the sweetest, most positive and uplifting person you'd ever meet. Never had an unkind word to say about anybody, and made every single person she encountered feel special. Truly saw the best in everyone!

    Now, part of that was just how she was wired.

    But I believe another big part is how actively she stayed engaged with her friends, her neighbors, her family, her church, and her students (piano teacher) She was always reading, always challenging herself, always learning something new.
    And opening doors and in general chivalry was huge back then. I hardly ever see
    the general chivalry that they expected. Opening car doors, building doors,
    assisting someone when they sit, tipping your hat at someone, simply smiling and
    saying "good day!" to someone random in the street.

    Hmmm I don't necessarily agree with this. In fact, I just went on a business trip with about 5 coworkers, 3 of whom were male and in age from mid- 20s to early 30s. All were very courteous and chivalrous with opening doors, letting the women walk first, etc.

    In summary, I don't think it's fair to generalize all old people as crotchety, and all young people as slacker jerks. ;)
  • jeepcurlygurljeepcurlygurl Posts: 19,238Registered Users Curl Dabbler
    Saria wrote: »
    I'm young and I'm pretty cranky. If I live that long I'm either going to be (incredibly) insufferable, or I'll go the opposite direction and mellow out. Which is pretty much the two groups the elderly fit into. I mean, they've had to put up with decades of stupid ****.

    I think saria has it exactly right. There's only so much 'stupid' we can take.
    I'm a happy contented person but I LOVE being cranky. Sometimes the old days WERE better. Young people today sometimes ARE dumb and spoiled and lazy. Sometimes of the people running the world really DO make horrible decisions. And sometimes people DO just suck. So after putting up with it for so many years we get the right to whine about it.

    And I don't think cranky means the same thing as miserable or toxic or mean. To me cranky means grumbling and tsk tsking the goings on of the world.
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  • Fifi.GFifi.G Posts: 15,490Registered Users
    Here, here to Jeep and Sunshine. I agree, but I always take into account that loose 'in generals' can in no way speak for every person of a generation. That is humanly impossible. It is however something I have witnessed. I have heard "get out of my way old b**ch" as opposed to 'excuse me' said to a woman in her 80's. I have witnessed a great deal of disrespectful behavior, that was sincerely uncalled for, over the past 15 years or so. I have watched it grow, and been shocked by it because I would have had my head knocked off for acting like that. Seniors are more widely cast aside now, and I am sure that is horribly frustrating, especially when you still have wisdom and many other things to offer.

    Thing other than "Welcome to Walmart. Get your **** and get out" - Walter (perfect puppet example of a cranky old man)

    I do think people get bolder as they get older as well. You have seen, been through, and learned more things and you do not mind saying what you think. You call things for what they are. Some always have, some always will, and some start when they become more comfortable in their own skin.

    I also agree that there is a huge difference in cranky and toxic.
    When I hear terms like "hipster" I think, who told cliques they could leave high school??

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  • Fifi.GFifi.G Posts: 15,490Registered Users
    Prime example. The last time I saw the 94 year old husband of my childhood babysitter, before he passed, was actually in a Walmart. He asked if I had a 'special guy' in my life. I said no and he said, "Good! You are the smartest woman I know. None of these little bleepers are worth a bleeping bleep these days! They are all bleepers!" I died. It was hysterical. I had never heard him go off like that, in front of anyone. In his shop, while he was fixing or building things, yes. It's all out the window, and he was speaking the truth ;)
    When I hear terms like "hipster" I think, who told cliques they could leave high school??

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  • LadyV69LadyV69 Posts: 3,397Registered Users
    I think another problem is that these people grew up in the depression or post WWII. It was big-time etiquette to address people as they should. "Miss, Ma'am, Sir, etc." You were always very respectful of your elders because they were older than you and deserved that respect.

    Now, looks at our generation. Could we be more disrespectful as a whole? "We" (general we) don't call people Miss, Ma'am, Sir, Ladies and Gentleman. When you greet someone, you say "Hey Guys!"

    And opening doors and in general chivalry was huge back then. I hardly ever see the general chivalry that they expected. Opening car doors, building doors, assisting someone when they sit, tipping your hat at someone, simply smiling and saying "good day!" to someone random in the street.

    I don't agree with all this. Basic etiquette like saying "Excuse me," "please" and "thank you" is sometimes lacking these days but I've never been all that down with so called chivalry-men opening doors and such. To me, it just perpetuated patriarchy and reinforced women's status as being weak. If I'm carrying a heavy load and I'm about to reach a door to go outside, I don't give a damn who happens to open it for me if they're so inclined. I've opened doors for people-male or female. In fact, women happen to open doors and give up their seats on public transportation far more often than men do.
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  • SunshineGrrlSunshineGrrl Posts: 3,823Registered Users
    LadyV69 wrote: »
    I think another problem is that these people grew up in the depression or post WWII. It was big-time etiquette to address people as they should. "Miss, Ma'am, Sir, etc." You were always very respectful of your elders because they were older than you and deserved that respect.

    Now, looks at our generation. Could we be more disrespectful as a whole? "We" (general we) don't call people Miss, Ma'am, Sir, Ladies and Gentleman. When you greet someone, you say "Hey Guys!"

    And opening doors and in general chivalry was huge back then. I hardly ever see the general chivalry that they expected. Opening car doors, building doors, assisting someone when they sit, tipping your hat at someone, simply smiling and saying "good day!" to someone random in the street.
    I don't agree with all this. Basic etiquette like saying "Excuse me," "please" and "thank you" is sometimes lacking these days but I've never been all that down with so called chivalry-men opening doors and such. To me, it just perpetuated patriarchy and reinforced women's status as being weak. If I'm carrying a heavy load and I'm about to reach a door to go outside, I don't give a damn who happens to open it for me if they're so inclined. I've opened doors for people-male or female. In fact, women happen to open doors and give up their seats on public transportation far more often than men do.

    I'm not saying it doesn't exist, I'm just saying it's a lot less prevalent than when these people were younger. They could see it as a way to grumble and groan and say how the world is so much different than when they grew up. It is, after all, so much easier to remember the bad things (or rude things or whatever) than the everyday chivalrous and kind things people do.

  • SariaSaria Posts: 15,963Registered Users
    Yeah, I don't agree about younger people being rude. I've scarcely encountered anyone who won't hold the door for you, and not out of chivalry, but simple courtesy. As for speaking, it's not really about being rude as much as times change and language evolves.
    Plus I don't agree with the concept of treating people with deference simply because of age.
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  • NetGNetG Posts: 8,116Registered Users
    I believe in treating people with respect regardless of age, rather than deference simply because of age.

    In my mom's case, she's extra cranky and miserable to be around because she doesn't want to admit to herself that she's losing it mentally. I attempt to only call her on things which are dangerous to someone and just let her be wrong the rest of the time, as well as to not be condescending or rude when correcting her, but she still gets super PO'd and MEAN about it. Part of it is that she has always been passive aggressive and never learned healthy communication, so to her saying "Mom, you can't cut up that raw chicken then cut up the vegetables for the salad without washing your hands or the cutting board and knife" in a conversational tone becomes me yelling at and picking on her "because she can't do anything right." She doesn't have any hobbies or interests and doesn't do anything for her mind like the folks who are happy and elderly mentioned in this thread, and there's a limit to what encouragement you can give without being condescending about it.

    My closest grandmother was not cranky until she was about 85, and that was when her body started failing. There was definitely a direct correlation.

    My other grandmother was a bit cranky from taking care of my grandpa, but on the other hand he was a total delight the last time I saw him at 90. He may have had alzheimers (we suspect it was an incorrect diagnosis in his 60s or he wouldn't have lived so long, but didn't have an autopsy done), but regardless he had memory loss and often thought he was in his 20s or 30s. He was still sharp and interesting to talk to, and lost some of his filter so we learned he had a very witty and somewhat snotty sense of humor he had been keeping restrained his whole life. He was cheerful and happy to talk to company even if he didn't know who we were, though he did have moments where he realized how old he was and who we all were.
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  • BlackAngelPlayahBlackAngelPlayah Posts: 1,419Registered Users
    Most of the above...

    It's the young cranky people that surprise me more.

    I guess it happens at different points in life.

    Now sure you get people who are just negative from BIRTH. but for most it's the going through things that does it. You go through so much pain, so much heartbreak. So much disappointment.

    Then you get some one younger- either in age or just in experience- who hasn't been through as much. So they have a different outlook. And as soon as they open their mouth, you're annoyed by their not knowing.. Then they're annoyed by your knowing...

    So old people are cranky... Young people are naive. It's the way things are.

    Now at some point (for some people) balance is reached. And pain is recovered from. Those are the old people who just smile at you no matter what and go about their day. :)
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  • theliothelio Posts: 5,374Registered Users
    I have genreally mellowed out and became a happier person as I have gotten older. The old folks in my life has done the same. except one who was always an evil vile woman. i do think with age people dont hold their tongues as much. I know i dont.

    While I am a happy person in general when I encounter stupidity it brings down my mood.Young people make me feel older because I realize how so different I am from them. I do think the younger generations are more lax with politeness. I know this irritates the crap out of the older people I know. There have been many times I have seen young kids speaking to adults very rudely and i have wanted to spank some respect into them. if I was 80 and lived through what I lived through and saw who was going to take over things, I would be cranky as hell! And depressed. :sad1:

    disclaimer: I am speaking about young people in general. I am aware that not all young people are rude or disrespectful. I have some good ones in my family. But on an everyday basis, most people will encounter the kind of young people who need their mouths washed out with soap and some lessons in manners. I have some of those in my family as well.
  • Fifi.GFifi.G Posts: 15,490Registered Users
    There is a certain circle to it. I was probably in my early to mid 20's when I started noticing things about the generation proceeding mine (again, I am talking general trends). Baby Boomers did the same with my generation, so on and so forth.

    I have been floored by the way some of my fellow gen x friends have raised their gen y and z children. Total lack of courtesy for everyone. Unfortunately, I have seen it several times. And I agree, everyone should be treated equally regardless of age/gender/on and on. I hold the door open for men and women if they have their hands full, and I hope someone will do the same for me. Thats not saying I didn't have my, "I don't need you to hold the door open for me" moment. I went through stages, I have many more to go through, and I am well aware that I don't know a great deal. I just know what I know, so far :) I'm good with that because I am still learning.

    Well said with 'mellowing out' Thelio (in many senses) and the comment about family members. I love my gen y babies (I don't care if the oldest is now 24, he is still my baby nephew). Please don't get me started on the youngest. I sometimes don't know where to begin BUT It's in no way a reflection on everyone, but a reflection on changes and situations. Not all are good.

    Think I am done editing now other than saying, of course it deals with age, and hormones. lol. It's a little bit of everything.
    When I hear terms like "hipster" I think, who told cliques they could leave high school??

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  • fraufrau Posts: 6,130Registered Users
    sigh....so my crankiness has nothing to do with age or hormones?
  • NalliaNallia Posts: 2,979Registered Users
    I don't think the elderly are any crankier than anyone else. I think people tend to only remember the unhappy, rude ones, the same way people tend to only remember the unhappy, rude teenagers. So both groups get labeled rude/cranky by everyone else.
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