Great Myths of Aging
Erber (Joan T.) & Szuchman (Lenore T.)
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Amazon Book Description

  1. Great Myths of Aging looks at the generalizations and stereotypes associated with older people and, with a blend of humor and cutting–edge research, dispels those common myths.
  2. Reader-friendly structure breaks myths down into categories such as Body, Mind, and Living Contexts; and looks at myths from “Older people lose interest in sex” to “Older people are stingy” Explains the origins of myths and misconceptions about aging Looks at the unfortunate consequences of anti-aging stereotypes for both the reader and older adults in society.

Back Cover Blurb
  1. If you think aging is all about memory loss, hearing aids, and walkers — think again. Most of what society tells us about aging and older adulthood is simply not true for most people. Armed with the most up-to-date research and scientific evidence, Great Myths of Aging dispels the myriad myths, misconceptions, and “anti–aging” stereotypes.
  2. The authors explore the origins and evolution of the common stereotypes about the elderly, both the negative ones (old people are withdrawn and grouchy) as well as the positive ones (with age comes wisdom).
  3. While writing with humor and verve, the authors also highlight the serious side of our unexamined beliefs: that deep hurt and damage can be caused when we take these myths as true.
  4. Great Myths of Aging sets the record straight on the elderly by revealing how so much of the stereotypical thinking on the topic is, well, getting old.
  5. Joan T. Erber is Professor Emeritus of Psychology at Florida International University. She is the author of Adult Development and Aging, 3rd edition (Wiley, 2013). Dr. Erber is a Fellow of the Gerontological Society of America (GSA), the Association for Psychological Science (APS), and the American Psychological Association (APA).
  6. Lenore T. Szuchman is a developmental psychologist and Professor Emeritus of Psychology at Barry University. She is the author of Writing with Style: APA Style Made Easy, and co-editor of Psychological Perspectives on Human Sexuality.

Book Comment
  • John Wiley & Sons; 1 edition (14 Oct 2014)
  • Great Myths of Psychology

"Erber (Joan T.) & Szuchman (Lenore T.) - Great Myths of Aging: Introduction"

Source: Erber (Joan T.) & Szuchman (Lenore T.) - Great Myths of Aging

"Erber (Joan T.) & Szuchman (Lenore T.) - Great Myths of Aging: The Body"

Source: Erber (Joan T.) & Szuchman (Lenore T.) - Great Myths of Aging, Chapter 1

  • "Speak up! I can't hear you!" – 6
    1. It is best to speak to an older person as you would to a small child - loudly, slowly, and with exaggerated emphasis – 7
    2. Hearing aids are beneficial for older adults in just about any situation, but many are just too stubborn to use them – 9
  • You can't be too careful (or ... falling down and crashing cars) – 12
    1. Older people worry too much about falling – 13
    2. Older people get into more car accidents than younger people – 15
  • Now that you don't have sex anymore... – 20
    1. Older people lose interest in sex – 20
    2. Older women do not care about their looks – 25
    3. Older people need to wear diapers, and how sexy is that? – 29
    4. It's always best for older adults to be married rather than single – 32

"Erber (Joan T.) & Szuchman (Lenore T.) - Great Myths of Aging: The Mind"

Source: Erber (Joan T.) & Szuchman (Lenore T.) - Great Myths of Aging, Chapter 2

  • "I'm just having a senior moment" – 37
    1. Brain power declines with age – 38
    2. Older adults can't or won't learn new things - like technology. They would rather get a stupid phone than a smart one – 42
  • "Did I tell you this already?" – 46
    1. As people grow older, they get forgetful, and this is always a sign of dementia – 46
    2. Alzheimer's disease, dementia - they're one and the same – 50
    3. There's no help for Alzheimer's, so don't waste time or money on diagnosis of memory problems – 52
  • Older but wiser – 55
    1. Wisdom comes with age, so older adults are wise – 56
    2. Older adults are suckers and are easy prey for scam artists – 59
    3. Older people are extra cautious when they have to make decisions – 63

"Erber (Joan T.) & Szuchman (Lenore T.) - Great Myths of Aging: The Self"

Source: Erber (Joan T.) & Szuchman (Lenore T.) - Great Myths of Aging, Chapter 3

  • Older people are a disagreeable bunch – 66
    1. Older people are hypochondriacs – 67
    2. Older people are stingy – 71
    3. Older people are grouchy – 75
  • "Give me my lunch. Now go away." – 78
    1. Older adults prefer to be taken care of - they don't want a lot of responsibilities – 78
    2. Older people are introverted and prefer to spend time alone – 81
  • Why try to improve your life if the future is so brief? – 85
    1. Older adults have given up any hopes and dreams – 85
    2. Older people are set in their ways – 87
    3. Growing old is depressing; no wonder older people are more depressed than younger people – 90
    4. Older adults do not benefit significantly from therapy – 92

"Erber (Joan T.) & Szuchman (Lenore T.) - Great Myths of Aging: Living Contexts"

Source: Erber (Joan T.) & Szuchman (Lenore T.) - Great Myths of Aging, Chapter 4

  • Growing old can only mean there is more opportunity to enjoy the bliss of family relationships – 98
    1. Older adults would choose living with kids and grandkids rather than living alone – 99
    2. Older adults want to spend all their time with grandkids and they never have favorites – 102
    3. Sibling relationships are stable throughout life – 105
  • Retirement is for sissies – 108
    1. Older workers are inferior to younger workers – 109
    2. Older adults hardly ever have trouble getting work – 111
    3. Retirement is depressing, so older adults only retire when they are forced to do so – 113
    4. Retired older adults are privileged financially – 117
    5. After they retire, older folks want to move to where it's warm – 122

"Erber (Joan T.) & Szuchman (Lenore T.) - Great Myths of Aging: Endings and Loss"

Source: Erber (Joan T.) & Szuchman (Lenore T.) - Great Myths of Aging, Chapter 5

  • All the good ones are either gay, married, or dead – 124
    1. If older widows date, it's to find a new husband – 125
  • And then you die... – 127
    1. A majority of older adults end up in nursing homes and stay there till they die – 128
    2. Suicide is more common among adolescents and young adults than it is among older adults – 131
    3. Older people have the greatest fear of death of any age group - they are the closest to it, so they should know – 135

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