Upward Social Comparison In Old Age

2159 Words 9 Pages
Given that old age is often characterized by negative stereotypes it is common for older adults to have negative perceptions on aging. These pervasive messages suggest that older adults are “frail, ill, old people” which tend to perpetuate these negative attitudes. Henchoz, Cavalli, and Girardin (2008) suggest that comparison mechanisms assist older adults in opposing those views and seeing past those fundamentals of old age. Consequently, basing their views of aging on a more self-perceived attitude. According to Henchoz, et.al. there are “three social process applied by older people in assessing their health” (p. 282). These three process include social comparisons, which constructs its own dichotomous process and temporal comparison. The most widely used process, downward social comparison, asserts that older adults tend to judge themselves in accordance to other people who are less well-off. While, upward social comparison asserts that older adults assess themselves with people believed to be better. It is these social comparison processes that allow individuals to satisfy a distinctively human desire for self-assessment and maintain their self-esteem. In contrast to social comparison, temporal comparison, involves a comparison of one’s own health at a pervious point in time. With these mechanisms, “each is capable of affecting …show more content…
In fact, sex and sexuality are important components to healthy living. Moreover, they propose that sex and sexuality among older adults, “remains largely misunderstood, [that there are] negative societal attitudes, and significant barriers to sexual expression” (p. 201). In any case, these questions demonstrate the importance of educating younger cohorts concerning age discrimination and the ideology behind successful aging in maintaining quality of life and well-being for older

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