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Article Title

Reflections and Legacies

Abstract

Adjustment to old age poses special problems. It requires an acceptance of being old and restructuring one's life around decreasing energy and body resources. "Old age is neither inherently miserable nor inherently sublime - like every stage of life, it has problems, joys, fears, and potentials."1 What is it like for an older woman as she experiences physical, emotional, and social changes?

For purposes of this study, twenty-five women ranging in age from 67 through 88 were interviewed either individually, in dyads, or in groups. Each woman was presented with the same basic information: the author was interested in and doing a study about what it means to be an older woman. They were asked to comment on body image, feelings, community changes, relationship patterns with friends and spouse, and any other experiences both positive and negative in their past, present, or future as they anticipate it.

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