Personal Views

If I can do it anyone can

BMJ 1997; 315 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.315.7115.1100b (Published 25 October 1997) Cite this as: BMJ 1997;315:1100
  1. Katherine Harris
  1. lives in London

    Certainly for me, the key to a fulfilling old age is staying independent. Though I'm 82 on the surface, I feel about 50 inside. I feel mature enough to know how difficult life has been, but young enough to start doing new things.

    By nature I am very independent, and still do my own housework except cleaning the windows, as my children have persuaded me that climbing isn't such a good idea. My doctor doesn't understand this attitude, and offers all sorts of help, which I don't need. My response is to say that when I do need it, I will ask, and then I will expect it to be available.

    Old age is a time of great opportunity. A positive mental attitude is more important than being strong physically, and perhaps it's something you're born with or learn at a young age. I know people who say that they would love to do something new, but they can't. If someone says I …

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