I’m starting a series for the next few weeks that is written to my target audience. Of course, anyone can read it. If you know anyone in my target audience, please pass it on to them…or anyone else who might enjoy or be encouraged by these posts.
I’m writing to older women. As you may notice, we aren’t a group that many target. Well, medical equipment companies do. Cemetery companies do. But there are plenty of groups who should. They just aren’t aware of it.
I don’t know of any group that has the best sense of humor, is resilient, has lived through the largest number of life experiences, and is often the most ignored when people are looking for advice.
It flies in the face of all common sense! That’s why we often feel invisible.
When you need advice on raising children in terms of priorities, where do you go?
When you want advice and encouragement on raising children, do you ask someone who is doing it for the first time, or do you ask someone who has been through the entire process? I’m not talking about specifics necessarily, but for advice about
- what do you feel should have been your priorities, for example?
- What do you wish you had done more of?
- Emphasized less? Those kinds of things.
- That is the kind of advice you want to hear from someone who has been through the whole gamut of child-raising and may even have some grandchildren.
When you need marriage advice and priority advice, where do you go?
- If their marriage failed, what did they learn from it?
- Did they learn something about the person they chose to marry and why it was/wasn’t a good idea?
- Did they learn that they didn’t do well at problem-solving?
- Or they had a lifestyle of just being too busy and not taking time to stop and pause a bit?
- Or was it something else completely?
- If they were married a long time, what did they learn?
- Being married a long time doesn’t always equal a happy marriage.
- What good habits did they have?
- What habits were not helpful?
- What would they change?
- What would they have done more of?
- Less of?
These women will encourage you in your marriage to hang in and persevere approrpiately…assuming it is not a situation where there is abuse.
They have a sense of history you only get from those who have lived through it.
Whether it is family history, history of your nation or memories of life before certain inventions were in common use, she will be able to pass on to you what life was like during those periods of time. Personally, I regret that I didn’t journal more so I would remember some of the more mundane periods of my life and what I was thinking then. I still remember many of the big events and shocking historical events I lived through…and there have been many! But what I was thinking during the more mundane periods? I’m not sure. Journaling would have helped me there.
Of course, I remember what life was like before the cell phone or even caller ID. Answering the phone was quite exciting. You never knew who was on the other end of the line!
Don’t expect their advice to come packaged in a certain way. It may not come in the way you expect at all!
If you know older women, pay attention to their advice, especially the ones who are open and vulnerable with you. When they tell you about mistakes they made, listen. take mental notes. Not everyone is willing to tell you about their mistakes.
When they tell you about their grief and loss, pay double attention. For most people, that is a deep place they don’t talk about much. Pray for them. Don’t minimize what they share. But I’m preaching to the choir right now.
Grief and loss are hard to talk about. It often involves rambling and is tied to memories of other grief and loss. We rarely talk about it in neat, tidy sentences. Partly because it is rarely neat and tidy. It is messy and sloppy…even when we “work through” it. It is never neat, ever. It is a painful scar on our soul. It heals. But it is always there to remind us of our loss.
So who do I write to? Older women who have been lonely and struggled with grief and loss.
So who do I write to? I write to older women. You can define older however you want. They are definitely not in their 20’s and rarely in their 40’s. You can take it from there as you define “older women.” This older woman is 74.
Of course, all of us still have much to learn. We all are growing. We all are in the process of being changed by GOD. He does it in a different order for each of us. So even when I’m with younger women, I can still learn from them too! My concern is that often in our culture, older women get ignored and marginalized by younger women…to their peril. We need each other for healthy growth to take place.
“Listen to me, O house of Jacob,
all the remnant of the house of Israel,
who have been borne by me from before your birth,
carried from the womb;
even to your old age I am he,
and to gray hairs I will carry you.
I have made, and I will bear;
I will carry and will save.
Isaiah 46:3-4 ESV
This is the complete sentence that describes my reader and my job related to her.
Many older women feel lonely as they
struggle with grief & loss,
I help you become aware of God’s embrace
& His presence with you
as you learn to find hope.