Book Girls' Guide to Aging with Grit and Gusto Changes the Conversation on Women and Aging
By: Linda Benjamin
Challenging the idea that women must choose between fighting aging and accepting a life without purpose and joy, the new book Girls' Guide to Aging with Grit and Gusto from author, licensed social worker, and sager Linda Benjamin, aims to inspire women at all stages of life to age wisely and thrive by helping them find positive older role models.
Equal parts memoir and interview, Benjamin begins Girls' Guide with her own journey, told with honesty and wry humor. Her deepest wish for the book is to change the narrative on women and aging and open a conversation between women of all ages
Like many older women, by her early sixties, Benjamin felt no one wanted her personally or professionally. She felt invisible. After moving halfway across the country for a new job and a new start following her divorce, she entered therapy, met herself for the first time, and began searching for relatable role models of empowered aging.
Her search for positive older role models inspired her to conduct the original interviews included in the book. Over a period of 13 years, she spoke with six women, aged sixty to ninety, who she felt "were defying cultural stereotypes of older women as irrelevant, unattractive, and disempowered."
Now in her seventies, Benjamin would like her new book to be an offering to women both young and old. "There is no reason to go it alone," Linda says. "Women in their 20s, 30s, and 40s can learn so much from the stories of older women. Competition between young women and older women, that's a story we've been told. It's time to debunk the myths and support each other in the cause of living our own dreams."
For Linda Benjamin, those new dreams include using her new role as an author to guide and inspire other women to keep living extraordinary lives.
Linda Benjamin, LCSW, has been a clinical social worker for over thirty years. She was Supervisor of Program Development at WNET/Thirteen in New York. She hosted a live radio program in New York City; wrote and aired her humorous radio segments, Psychobabble, on Milwaukee's NPR. She has published articles in The New York Times, Chicago Woman, and The Woman's Newspaper of Princeton.
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